LAFAYETTE -- A small staph infection outbreak led to the cancellation of a Congressional town hall meeting Saturday morning at Acalanes High School.
The Lafayette school has spent the last couple days scrubbing down athletic facilities after one confirmed case and a second suspected case of staph infection, said Vicky Balladares, a Contra Costa health department spokeswoman. The confirmed case is not the Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), a strain of the highly contagious infection that is difficult to treat, she said.
Early Saturday, dozens of residents showed up at the school's cafeteria to attend Congressman George Miller's first town hall of the session, and his first in Lafayette, which recently joined his district. A sign at the school had a line through the Lafayette townhall announcement and said: "Canceled due to staph." School signs read: "PE Complex Shut Down Until Further Notice!" and "All PE CLASSES -- Do Not Dress -- Meet in the Big Gym."
Resident Jason Bezis was one of those turned away, finding yellow caution tape surrounding the school's athletic areas, including the locker rooms and small gym.
"I don't know how serious of a health issue it is ... but I thought it was odd that as a public citizen I can't find any information," he said.
In a letter to parents Friday, principal Aida Glimme said there were two confirmed cases
"In order to prevent further spreading of the infection, we closed down the small gym, weight room and locker rooms," she wrote. "These facilities are being professionally cleaned and will be reopened (Friday) and (Saturday). We understand that this has caused a disruption to our PE classes and athletic practices, however as mentioned above, student safety and health is our priority."
Miller was scheduled to speak about the economy and jobs, reducing gun violence, and improving education at the town hall. He held a second gathering Saturday in Danville.
Contact Matthias Gafni at 925-952-5026. Follow him at Twitter.com/mgafni.