La Joya ISD: Students at North Star Mall ‘not at risk’ of coronavirus

LA JOYA — The La Joya school district issued a statement Tuesday saying that although a group of folklorico students visited an area where a COVID-19 coronavirus case was confirmed over the weekend, the students and staff “were not in direct contact or at risk at any point.”

According to the statement, these students traveled to Round Rock for a competition over the weekend and stopped for lunch at the North Star Mall in San Antonio on Monday.

The mall closed its doors Monday afternoon after being notified by the San Antonio Metro Health District that an individual who visited the mall Saturday later tested positive for the coronavirus, according to the mall’s Facebook page.

“The San Antonio Metro Health District has stated this individual was not exhibiting any symptoms and is considered to be relatively low risk to the public,” the Facebook post read. “While the shopping center had been cleaned several times using CDC-recommended products, as an abundance of caution, we made the decision to close North Star Mall temporarily to allow for a further deep cleaning of the center.

“We want to reiterate that there is a low risk to the public, but we are taking extra precautions for the well-being of our shopping center community.”

The release from La Joya ISD states Hidalgo County health officials were immediately notified of the visit.

“We were informed that none of our students or staff members were in direct contact or at risk at any point,” Superintendent Gisela Saenz wrote in the statement. “In an effort to place parents and/or guardians minds at ease, La Joya ISD Crisis Team along with the Hidalgo County Health Department Officials met with the students that visited the San Antonio North Star Mall area to ensure their well-being. We want to make sure our parents are aware of the efforts we are doing at La Joya ISD to keep our students and their families safe.”

Saenz wrote that the district will continue following its protocols to disinfect buses and buildings.

“Our teachers, school nurses, and staff are working strategically and diligently to carefully encourage these simple and effective habits of frequent handwashing, covering every cough or sneeze, and cleaning classroom tables/surfaces frequently,” she wrote. “Our school district is working with the Hidalgo County Health and Human Services Department, the Texas Department of State Health Services, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to remain up to date on the COVID-19 virus.”

Parents with questions or concerns are encouraged to contact their child’s school nurse.

La Joya ISD will continue to monitor the situation and keep residents updated as more information becomes available. Residents are encouraged to contact the school nurse at their children’s campus to address any questions or concerns.

Hidalgo County also created a webpage Monday to keep residents informed on the virus. Users can read information about the spread of the virus, and sign up for emergency alerts via phone, text and email at