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Lac La Biche-area schools see increase in COVID cases

Ecole Plamondon reports 8 cases in last two days
le plamondon
Ecole Plamondon is reporting eight active cases of COVID 19, all within the last two days.

Two classrooms and two bus routes are linked to  the five current cases of COVID-19 at Northern Lights Public School's Aurora Middle School.

The cases at the Lac La Biche school jumped from three to five on Tuesday after two new cases were reported to school officials. The increasesover the last week are similar at other schools across the region. The first three cases at Aurora were reported from January 13 through 17 and are linked to two Grade 8 classes at the Grade 4-9 school. Two bus routes — 123 and 127 —  that serve the school, are also linked to the current cases.

The numbers reflect only the cases that are reported to school officials from families. AHS no longer informs school divisions when a positive test relates to a school, and school officials are no longer mandated to tell families or staff when a case has been connected to the school.

Schools continue to report

In updates to families, however, NLPS and officials in the division's schools say that transparency to the families is vital and they will continue to inform families when cases are linked to their schools.

"Northern Lights Public Schools is committed to transparency and believes it is important to share information about cases of COVID19 with parents and guardians so they can make informed decisions for their families and can support our schools in their efforts to reduce the spread of COVID-19 and maintain healthy and safe learning environments for our students," notes the update from Aurora issued Tuesday afternoon.

Prior to the provincial health officials removing the reporting process at schools, an outbreak alert status was issued when five or more cases were confirmed.

Ecole Plamondon reports 8 cases in two days

On Tuesday afternoon, Ecole Plamodon School was reporting eight active cases of COVID linked to its Grade 7 and 8 classrooms — all reported in the previous two days. Three of the cases are also linked to school bus route 124.

Lac La Biche's J.A. Williams High School was reporting two active cases on Tuesday afternoon, with one reported on January 12 and the other on January 13.

Vera M. Welsh Elementary is reporting four active cases on Tuesday afternoon linked to pre-school and Kindergarten classes and Grade 2.  Two of the cases were reported January 17 and the other two were reported on January 12 and 13. School bus routes 123 and 127 are also linked to the current cases.

On Tuesday, Kikino School was reporting four active cases going back to the first reported on January 14. The cases are linked to Kindergarten, Grades 1 and 6 classes.

Caslan School was reporting no current reported cases of the virus on Tuesday.

At Lac La Biche's Light Of Christ Catholic School, Lakeland Catholic School District officials are reporting two active cases on Tuesday. Both cases were reported on January 17 and are linked to the Grade 3/4 and 5 classes. The Grade 5/6 girls school basketball team is also linked to one of the current cases.

Cases are considered current within a two-week time period.

For students or staff who do test positive for the virus, there are new guidelines in place for isolation times.  If a person is vaccinated, but tests positive, they are to isolate for five days from either the start of the symptoms or from when the symptoms go away — whichever is longer. If the person is un-vaccinated at the time they test positive, the isolation period is a minimum of 10 days or until the symptoms have been resolved.




Rob McKinley

About the Author: Rob McKinley

Rob has been in the media, marketing and promotion business for 30 years, working in the public sector, as well as media outlets in major metropolitan markets, smaller rural communities and Indigenous-focused settings.
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