WESTFORD (CBS) – Four students at Westford Academy have contracted MRSA, a highly contagious staph infection, including three members of the high school football team.

“My son told me this afternoon that he needed to bring all of his football pads home to clean them and disinfect them,” said parent Kirsten Mahoney.

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The Superintendent notified parents on the district’s website. School is out Thursday, due to previously scheduled conferences, but administrators are taking advantage of an empty building, explaining:

“Westford Academy understands the urgency addressing these infections immediately, and will continue to disinfect locker rooms, gym mats and equipment.”

MRSA is often resistant to antibiotics and can turn into a more serious infection if not treated.

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“The symptoms of MRSA include an area of skin that is red and hot and painful,” said Dr. Mallika Marshall. “Patients can get sick with a fever and sometimes it might form an abscess or a boil.”

Parents at an evening soccer match were concerned, but say they felt the infection was somewhat isolated.

MRSA isn’t that uncommon. In fact, five years ago, Westford Academy experienced a similar outbreak.

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“They’ll do a good job, they’ll clean up,” said parent Mary Russo. “This happened a few years ago, it will be fine.”