50 senior students at St Brigids College are in quarantine and some teachers, the principal has said in a letter said in the Mail-Times.
Principal Peter Gutteridge said: "Whilst contact tracing remains active, the DHHS has informed us that, as an extra precaution, 50 of our senior students and some teaching staff are to quarantine for a 14 day period, with the quarantine commencing from the last day of contact with our confirmed student. Parents of these students have received information from the DHHS earlier today.
"The deep environmental clean process is currently taking place at school and will be completed by tomorrow. A certificate of completion of the deep clean will be sent to the DHHS who will then initiate the process to reopen our College. Once our College has received permission to reopen, all parents and students will be notified so that materials required for our two week remote learning period can be collected."
HUNDREDS of Horsham students will return to learning from home for the next two weeks.
Two days after first being notified a year 12 student had tested positive to coronavirus, St Brigid's College principal Peter Gutteridge informed parents via letter the change would come into effect on Monday, July 27.
In the letter, shared with the Mail-Times, he said the college had been closed Wednesday and Thursday so a deep clean could take place.
"Once this deep clean has been completed the DHHS will grant permission for St Brigid's to reopen," he said.
"Until this permission has been received from the DHHS, no staff member or student is permitted to be on the grounds of St Brigid's College. Whilst no further advice has been received from the DHHS today, contact tracing continues to be undertaken and the DHHS will advise those identified as a close contact to our student of the process that will need to be followed.
"Close contacts will be asked to self-isolate to help limit the spread of the virus, even if they do not have symptoms," he said
"Whilst this case is very concerning for our community, this is a time for us to band together and support those who are most vulnerable. Please look out for each other.
"It's more important than ever to practise physical distancing and wear an appropriate mask when this is not possible. For the good of our community, please maintain high standards of hand hygiene, continue working from home if possible, and get tested for even mild symptoms, including cough, fever, and sore throat.
A total of 271 students attend St Brigids College, according to the good schools guide.
Wednesday: The college will remain closed on Thursday and Friday.
In a new letter to the school community seen by the Mail-Times, principal Peter Gutteridge said the DHHS had contacted him on Wednesday morning and confirmed a year 12 student had tested positive.
"Following direction from the DHHS, St Brigid's is now in the process of organising a deep clean of the whole school and so the school will be definitely closed for all staff and students tomorrow and Friday and possibly early next week but I will certainly communicate this to you should this be the case," he said.
"The DHHS has also asked St Brigid's to assist with contact tracing which we are currently working on. As stated in yesterday's email, those who have been identified as a person who has been in close recent contact with the affected student will be notified by the DHHS, hopefully within 24 hours, and supported to ensure everyone understands what actions are to be taken."
Tuesday: Horsham's St Brigid's College has temporarily closed after a student tested positive for COVID-19.
Principal Peter Gutteridge wrote to the school community on Tuesday night, informing them the school will close for at least Wednesday while it awaits guidance from the Department of Health and Human Services.
DHHS will work with the school to trace any potential contacts and create a containment strategy.
Affected students, their families and school staff will be notified by the DHHS.
Children of essential workers and vulnerable students will still be able to attend on-site learning.
Mr Gutteridge's letter reads:
"As a safety measure, I would like to advise that for tomorrow, Wednesday 22 July, the school will be open for onsite learning and teaching only for the children of essential workers and for students who are vulnerable. I am anticipating that the DHHS will outline any need for school closures beyond tomorrow. This reduced onsite presence will allow time for the school and the DHHS to work through a contact and containment strategy for the school, including identifying and notifying any person who has been in close recent contact with the affected student. Affected students, their families and school staff will be notified by the DHHS, hopefully over the next 24 hours, and supported to ensure they understand what actions to take.
"Any families that are concerned about their child's wellbeing should follow the advice of their medical practitioner and the Wimmera Health Care Group testing clinic which can be contacted on 5362 3474. All students are asked to be mindful of their movements over the next few days and to follow the usual social distancing and hygiene protocols.
"I understand this news can be unsettling and I want to assure you we are doing everything we can to contain and slow the spread of the virus, and ensure the health and safety of our whole school community.
"The school will update all families once the contact tracing has been completed and a decision about school operations has been reached. I will continue to keep you informed as further updates become available. At this point, the intention is to re-open St Brigid's on Thursday 23 July unless otherwise advised."
There are four active cases of COVID-19 in Horsham Rural City Council local government area as of Tuesday.
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