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More COVID-19 cases at Penticton high school

New cases of COVID-19 were reported at Princess Margaret Secondary School in Penticton over the weekend.
December 07, 2020 - 3:14 PM

More students have tested positive for COVID-19 at Princess Margaret Secondary School in Penticton.

The Okanagan-Skaha school district sent an information letter to parents yesterday, Dec. 6, alerting them of additional COVID-19 positive tests among Princess Margaret school community.

The school district was informed of the additional cases on Friday, Dec. 4, following the announcement of an initial positive test at Princess Margaret on Dec. 1.

Interior Health has identified and contacted all affected students who need to self isolate.

School district superintendent Todd Manual communicated with Interior Health officials over the weekend to get updates and direction with respect to COVID-19 at Princess Margaret.

In the letter to parents, Manuel said Interior Health has given the go-ahead for classes to continue at Princess Margaret following an “immunological summary.”

However, there will be some scheduling changes as a result of the recent exposures.

From Dec. 7 through Dec. 18, there will be no students in class for the afternoon block, with instruction continuing full time in the morning block only. The school will move to remote learning for the next two weeks in afternoon blocks only with a return to the regular schedule in January.

Interior Health said in a letter to parents and students Sunday, the majority of school exposures occur in the community and school safety plans have been effective in preventing the spread of COVID-19.

The health authority referred to the cases at Princess Margaret as “an extremely small number” requiring isolation of less than 10 per cent of the school community. Interior Health also said the exposures were “not unexpected and are a reflection of what we are seeing in the community."

“Transmission of COVID-19 at this school, if any, has been minimal,  Other places outside schools, such as malls or a friend’s home will not have the same layers of protection in place as schools, and could place students more at risk for contracting the illness,” IH medical health officer Dr. Silvina Mema said in the letter.

Interior Health continues to urge staff and students to stick to their cohorts, and avoid socializing outside their respective bubbles.


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