School closed after dozens of staff sickened following catered lunch

Suspected cases of norovirus shuts down school

MATTHEWS, NC (WBTV) - A Matthews-based Christian school was closed Monday after health officials say dozens of staff members were sickened at a catered lunch.

According to the Mecklenburg County Health Department, faculty members at Covenant Day School became ill with norovirus –like symptoms including nausea, vomiting and diarrhea over the weekend.

All of the people who became sick reportedly attended a catered lunch together on Friday. Health officials told WBTV there were about 70 people at the luncheon and around 50 people became sick.

According to the health department, the lunch was catered by Jersey Mikes, located at 2332-A Matthews Township Parkway in Matthews. The Health Department is working closely with the school and the restaurant to try and determine exactly what took place.

While they have not confirmed norovirus is the cause, it is heavily suspected. Health officials say it would take until the end of the week to get test results back. At that time, if it is norovirus, all those sickened would be better.

Health officials say they were contacted by school officials and the incident was properly reported.

The school posted on its website that it was closed Monday and families were told to check their email for more information.

This is the time of year that norovirus typically occurs, health officials said in a press conference Monday afternoon. In the past two years, there have been between 15-20 norovirus-related incidents per year.

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