Riverdale’s SAR Academy closes due to connection to confirmed coronavirus case

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SAR Academy and High School closed Tuesday morning due to a connection to the second confirmed coronavirus case in New York.

The Orthodox Jewish schools, located in Riverdale, closed after learning of the second confirmed coronavirus case in New York, a man from Westchester County.

It is believed that one of the man's children attends the high school. Both of his children are currently quarantined at home.

The man is currently in serious condition at a Manhattan hospital. Mayor Bill de Blasio said the child who attends SAR currently doesn't have any symptoms of the coronavirus, but that his other child, a student at a local university, does.

"He is the first patient who required hospitalization in New York City since the coronavirus issue began. He is the first patient to be seriously ill. And this appears to be an example of community spread," said de Blasio.

MORE: Coronavirus Extra Coverage

Gov. Andrew Cuomo confirmed the second case in a news conference Tuesday, stating a man in his 50s from New Rochelle was tested positive for COVID-19. Officials say he has an underlying respiratory condition. News 12 is told he works as an attorney in Manhattan and has connection to the Bronx.

Health officials say it is unclear how he caught the virus, explaining he has no known travel history to China or any other country on the virus watch list. However, they will be investigating all known associates he may have come in contact with. 

The school’s principal Rabbi Binyamin Krauss released a statement to parents and staff Tuesday saying there is a "suspected case of coronavirus in our community."

The school added that they were in touch with the New York City Health Department and are following its guidelines.

The statement also asked for the school community to "remain calm."

Another email was sent out by the staff saying that it is too early to know when the school will reopen, and that remote lessons should be considered. 

News 12 spoke to a former SAR student who says the school has always been transparent about any and all serious situations within the school.

Gov. Cuomo made an amendment to the paid sick leave bill Tuesday to include full pay if patients are quarantined for coronavirus. 

Officials tell News 12 that second patient is being hospitalized and is in serious condition.

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