An in-person bar mitzvah for Chris Christie’s nephew led to a COVID-19 outbreak and shut down a New Jersey middle school

Chris Christie. AP/Mel Evans
  • A New Jersey middle school abruptly closed after a COVID-19 outbreak caused by a bar mitzvah, the New York Post reported.
  • The bar mitzvah was held for former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s 13-year-old nephew.
  • The school is planning to resume in-person learning by Monday, Constantino said.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

A bar mitzvah held for the nephew of former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie forced a middle school to close down after several students who attended got infected with the coronavirus.

Students came out to celebrate on behalf of Christie’s 13-year-old nephew last weekend, the New York Post reported. Days later, Mendham Township schools Superintendent Salvatore Constantino told the Post the school had to shut down on Friday and hold virtual classes for the day.

“There were, unfortunately, a few adult cases and a few student cases that came out of it,” Constantino said, according to the Post.

“We couldn’t ensure a safe environment, so we thought it would be prudent for us to go virtual again on Friday,” Constantino added.

The Mendham Township Middle School did not immediately return Insider’s request for comment.

But Constantino told the Post the school expects to resume in-person learning by Monday.

A photo taken at the event obtained by the Post shows the parents of the nephew and their four other kids posing at a club in Newark, New Jersey, without masks.

It’s unclear how many students contracted the coronavirus at the bar mitzvah. Constantino, according to the Post, declined to give a specific number. But he said the school recorded “fewer than half a dozen [cases], stemming from the event and existing population.”

It’s also unclear how many people were in attendance at the event.

Christie told the Post his brother, the father of the nephew who had the bar mitzvah, had been vaccinated against the coronavirus.

Last year, Christie was hospitalized in an ICU after he contracted COVID-19. Prior to that infection, he had flouted mask guidelines from health agencies like the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Upon his hospitalization, he urged the public to take the virus seriously and wear a mask.

“Leaders, all across the politics, sports, the media, should be saying to people, put your masks on and be safe until we get a vaccine that could help to protect us,” he said.