A northeast Iowa school cancelled classes for Friday, even before weather warnings were issued.

Officials with the La Porte City-based Union Community School District made the decision to close the schools after a staff member contracted a norovirus.

A norovirus is a very contagious illness that can infect a person through contaminated food or water, contact with an already infected individual, or by touching surfaces that are contaminated.

School officials made the announcement about the closure on the district's Facebook page on Thursday. School administrators noted that by keeping students at home on Friday, the decision allowed for more time to thoroughly clean the building, lockers, desks and all surfaces.

Union school officials have also notified the Iowa Department of Health about the norovirus.

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