30 people, including 11 town officials, told to self-quarantine after COVID-19 concerns in Norwood

NORWOOD, Mass. — After 11 Norwood town officials and employees were told to self-quarantine on Friday, Norwood officials reported on Saturday that one of those 11 is superintendent David Thomson.

Those 11 were asked to self-quarantine after attending an event last week where an attendee tested positive for the novel coronavirus. All 11 will self-quarantine for 14 days to help curb the spread of the virus.

The person who tested positive for COVID-19 is not a town employee or town official, but is a resident of Norwood. Their identity is not being released at this time.

In the officials’ update on Saturday, they said superintendent Thomson is healthy and has not shown any symptoms of illness since attending the party at a private house on March 1. Because of this, officials said he won’t be tested for COVID-19 unless he develops symptoms.

Thomson will work from home next week and will return to school when his self-quarantine is over on March 16, if he remains symptom free.

“I am feeling healthy and will be able to easily work from home next week and expect this to have minimal interference on school operations,” superintendent Thomson said.

“The district has remained in close contact with our town health department officials and they assure me that there is no current cause for concern for students when it comes to attending school in Norwood. If there are any changes to that sentiment we will certainly let parents and the school community know as quickly as possible.”

All Norwood Public Schools will be open on Monday, March 9, officials said, and operate in normal fashion.

“Parents are encouraged to send their children to school next week. Please stay informed and we will notify parents if there are any updates,” said Health Director Sigalle Reiss.

“There is no known exposure to the schools and the risk of contracting the novel coronavirus remains low across the state, including in Norwood.”

This weekend while the schools are empty, the district is calling in custodial staff to sanitize and disinfect all Norwood schools and the district office.

On Friday night, Norwood officials announced that 30 people, including 11 town officials and employees, were notified that they needed to self-quarantine after attending the party last week.

“I actually have no idea who the residents are, so it’s kind of weird,” said Dimitri Thaxter, a Norwood resident. “You don’t know where they’ve been, what they’ve touched, if I touched the same thing, so it’s definitely nerve-racking, you know?”

One of the town employees who is self-quarantining, General Manager Tony Mazzucco, was tested for COVID-19 and is awaiting his results. Another private resident will also need to be tested, officials said.

Daniela Harder has a son in Norwood Public Schools and her daughter is studying abroad in Italy, one of the worst-hit areas by COVID-19.

“She’s a little bit concerned, mostly also because their movement is being so impaired and [she] has had no classes for already several weeks,” Harder said about her daughter. “I’m not concerned because I feel like the fear is being worse than the actual thing, and I feel like the fear needs to be overcome.”