They bring enthusiasm and school spirit to every game, but the Valencia High School cheer squad is on hiatus after a COVID-19 outbreak on campus.
"It absolutely surprised me!" Nancy Montez, a parent, wrote in an email sent to all parents of Valencia High students.
Principal Pete Getz said the outbreak consists of 33 cases among students and staff, primarily within the cheerleading squad.
"The entire cheer team shut down," said Dave Caldwell, a spokesman for the Hart Union School District. "So no cheerleaders at this upcoming football game friday night."
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The impacted students all tested positive within the past few days.
Last Thursday the cheerleaders performed at the annual Viking Fest on campus. A video from the school TV station shows the well attended outdoor carnival, but there is no indication exactly where and when the virus was transmitted.
"I'm actually picking up my daughter because they told me she has to quarantine," said Leslie Kim, a parent.
Her daughter sits next to an infected person in class and is not vaccinated.
"I'm going to get her tested and I think she'll be negative but we'll see," Kim said.
Since the number of cases rises to the level of an outbreak, the LA County Department of Public Health is involved and will be sending a team and additional resources to the campus.
"We've done everything we can, the vaccine, the mask, the hand sanitizer and so I'm hoping everyone else will make sure they're vaccinated and follow precautions like we've done," Montez said.
The school has notified parents their children do not need to quarantine if they don't have symptoms and if they're vaccinated.