FOSTER CITY (KPIX) – A COVID outbreak at a Bay Area school has forced a classroom to close. The shutdown has affected a lot more families outside that classroom.

Parents of 4th and 5th graders at Foster City Elementary School had to scramble to get their children tested. Still, many of them had to keep their kids home Monday, because without a negative test, the school, for safety reasons, will not let them come back.

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Some 26 students at Foster City Elementary were in full-quarantine at home after the school learned of an increase in positive cases since last Thursday.

“We didn’t tell him too much because we didn’t want him to get too concerned,” said parent Robert Romo.

When asked about specifics, the school declined to comment Monday on the outbreak.

But KPIX-5 obtained a letter sent Sunday from its principal stating it is “considering all students that are in 4th or 5th grade as close contacts” and requiring proof of a negative test, sending parents on a mad-dash to get students tested.

“He had test yesterday and we are waiting for the result,” said parent Asami Yachi.

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Many children who are not part of the quarantined class, still could not attend school in person Monday because they’re waiting for test results.

“I didn’t know I had to stay home. They just said someone tested positive in my class,” said 5th grader Violet Agte.

“She took a test, we’re waiting so in the meantime we’re keeping away from everyone else. Hopefully, she’ll be back in school tomorrow,” said grandparent Jeff Hoak.

The school says it’s taking additional steps to minimize contact including more spacing in classrooms and lunch by grade level only.

“We’re seeing cases in schools, because kids reside in the community. We’re not seeing a lot of credible transmissions within schools, but mainly testing from the community coming into schools and that’s not surprising,” said UCSF Professor of Medicine Infectious Diseases Dr. Peter Chin-Hong.

Parents are realizing this school year is looking a lot different already.

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“They are separating the students more. We have to work together to control the spread,” said June Zhang.