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13 cases reported: Public Health advising entire St. David school community to get COVID-19 tests

School board had already closed school and moved to online learning on Wednesday
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St. David Catholic Elementary School. (File)

Public Health Sudbury & Districts is now advising the entire St. David Catholic Elementary School community to self-isolate and contact a COVID-19 assessment centre to make arrangements to get tested.

That includes all students, staff and visitors to the school.

To date, there have been 13 cases of COVID-19 associated with an outbreak at the school. 

A press release put out by Public Health Sudbury said it was dismissing the entire school community, although Sudbury Catholic District School Board had already moved the school to online learning on Wednesday. 

“With additional cases reported this week, Public Health has determined there is potential widespread COVID-19 infection among the school community,” said a press release from Public Health Sudbury.

“Broader testing of the school community will assist with additional case finding. This combined with isolation of all school attendees is intended to limit further spread.”

“We are working closely with the St. David School community to ensure all necessary public health measures are put into place to identify potential cases and limit spread,” said Dr. Penny Sutcliffe, Medical Officer of Health with Public Health Sudbury & Districts. 

“These are difficult times, and we understand the strain that families are experiencing. These measures and your ability to follow public health guidance are critical to helping us stop the spread of COVID-19.”

Parents or guardians with children who cannot self-isolate on their own must also follow self-isolation guidance for themselves (this means, for example, not leaving the home for groceries or to work). 

Parents and guardians, as well as other household contacts, do not require testing. If a child can isolate on their own, then other family members are not required to self-isolate. Public Health will contact individuals who attended the school directly to provide direction.

Public Health Sudbury & Districts declared a COVID-19 outbreak in St. David School (Sudbury Catholic District School Board) in Greater Sudbury Jan. 19.

The decision by Public Health Sudbury & Districts about school re-opening will be made in consultation with the school and pending further investigation. 

Parents and guardians of students can visit the Sudbury Catholic District School Board’s website for information at www.sudburycatholicschools.ca.