Covid cases at 106 Norfolk schools as more close to all pupils
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Almost a quarter of schools across Norfolk have reported a pupil or a member of staff testing positive for coronavirus.
Norfolk County Council said there were 15 school and college outbreaks and 91 situations at the county’s 422 schools and academies.
Outbreaks are where there are two or more confirmed positives, a situation is where there is one positive case of Covid.
It comes as five schools either closed or remained shut on Monday with parents told that pupils needed to self-isolate due to coronavirus.
St Faiths’ Primary School in Horsham St Faith said it was “closed until further notice”, while Kenninghall Primary School is fully closed until November 22.
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John Grant School in Caister-on-sea said it had seen six positive cases of Covid-19 in two weeks and was awaiting test results on several more who “have developed concerning symptoms”.
The special school, which has 143 pupils, said the decision had been taken to close until November 23.
MORE: ‘They have been incredible’ - Impact of Covid on young people revealedHeadteacher Pam Ashworth said: “I know and understand that this will be difficult news for many of you having implications for managing the needs of our pupils at home and your work commitments.
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“We have not taken the decision lightly however, and we hope parents recognise that we have taken it with the best interests of all in mind.
“All the teachers have been preparing work for pupils to try and continue at home in case this situation arose.”
Last week Cliff Park Ormiston Academy, in Gorleston, closed until November 23 following a “further increase” in positive cases, while Hemblington Primary, near Blofield, sent home all 162 pupils until November 19 after two individuals tested positive.
Cliff Park, which has 880 students, said GCSE mock exams had also been postponed.
“It is, of course, not a decision that has been taken lightly,” vice-principal Zoe Cameron said. “However, it is critical that we follow the advice of the experts to safeguard our students, staff and importantly the wider academy community.”
A number of other schools have been forced to partially close including Robert Kett Primary School in Wymondham where children in reception and year three ‘bubbles’ have been told to stay at home until November 26. About 150 children are affected.
Headteacher Cara Fahy said: “We had to shut our year three and reception bubbles on Friday afternoon because we had a single confirmed case in one family which affected both bubbles.
“Teachers are delivering live lessons from their homes which has been really successful. We have had a really positive uptake from parents and children engaging.”
MORE: Norfolk and Suffolk school trust tells pupils to wear masks in classroomsCity of Norwich School, which is run by the Ormiston Academies Trust, said a number of students were now self-isolating as a precautionary measure following two people testing positive.
A spokesperson for the academy said: “Given the robust safety measures we have in place at the school including comprehensive contact tracing, we have been able to respond immediately and these students are now accessing remote learning from home, to limit any disruption to their education.
“As a result of the various, stringent safety measures we have in place, the school is safe to remain open to all other students.”
Norfolk County Council has reminded parents that whole households must self-isolate and get tested if a child living there shows Covid-19 symptoms.
Dr Louise Smith, director of public health, said that during the period of national restrictions it remained particularly important that those still going to school followed the public health guidelines.
She said: “That means that those who are continuing to meet with others at school need to be particularly careful to follow the guidelines – not just when they are in the classroom but when they have breaks during the day and when they are leaving, or arriving on site.
“Keep your distance, wash your hands regularly and cover your face where it’s needed.”