COVID outbreak hits Pennsylvania school as kids fuel new cases

A suburb of Philadelphia has seen an alarming COVID-19 outbreak among children and several fully vaccinated adults. All cases are connected to a single classroom. Nikki Battiste reports.

Video Transcript

NORA O'DONNELL: And there's growing concern tonight about coronavirus in children. Experts are now worried about the number of new infections being found in kids, which come as more of them are back in school together. CBS Nikki Battiste reports tonight from Philadelphia.

NIKKI BATTISTE: Tonight children account for more than 1 in 5 new COVID cases nationwide. Total infections are down week to week, but there are concerns the pandemic will linger until kids can be vaccinated.

CHARLES SCHLEEN: It's always concerning to see this many cases because even at a very tiny percentage, thousands of children are being infected, then some of them are going to land in the hospital.

NIKKI BATTISTE: In a Philadelphia suburb, eight second graders and two vaccinated family members from the Penn Valley Elementary school are in quarantine after testing positive for the virus. All are connected to a single classroom.

AMY BUCKMAN: This is the first time we saw this many cases in a single classroom.

NIKKI BATTISTE: Investigators are looking at whether a more transmissible variant may be to blame. They are also focusing on a classroom vent that was partially closed.

SARAH GALLO: Makes me worry a little bit about just the general parameters of what exactly three feet and the circulation is enough.

NIKKI BATTISTE: Meanwhile, the CDC has just released guidelines for opening summer camps, after many were shut down completely last year. Overnight camps should ask everyone, including campers, to be fully vaccinated if eligible or to self-quarantine two weeks ahead of arrival and show proof of a negative test.

While second graders affected here are under quarantine, they can learn remotely if they feel well enough. The school district says it's offering Pfizer vaccines to students 16 and older starting Friday. Nora.

NORA O'DONNELL: Nikki Battiste, thank you.