HUNTINGTON BEACH, Calif. (AP) – Public health officials say 24 unvaccinated students have been sent home from an Orange County high school because of the risk a student infected with measles exposed others to the highly contagious respiratory illness.

The Orange County Register reports that Matt Zahn, medical director for epidemiology at the Orange County Health Care Agency, sent a letter to parents saying an infected student was at Huntington Beach High School from Jan. 6 to 8.

The health agency says students without a measles vaccination were told to stay home until Jan. 29 to avoid spreading the disease, which has symptoms including fever and a blotchy body rash.

Measles cases have emerged in California and three other states in an outbreak linked to December visits to Disney theme parks in Orange County.