Ten per cent of Calderdale schools having to teach children at home because of coronavirus

Ten per cent of schools in Calderdale had pupils learning from home last week because of Covid-19.

Sunday, 27th June 2021, 6:16 pm
Updated Sunday, 27th June 2021, 6:18 pm
Students are being urged to carry on testing.
Students are being urged to carry on testing.

According to figures shared by Calderdale Councillor Mike Barnes (Skircoat, Labour) on social media, as of Friday, 11 of the around 100 schools in the borough had students who could not attend because positive tests for the virus had been confirmed.

"The fact is that we are seeing a large number of outbreaks and single cases in education settings (as of Friday this was affecting 11 schools) and this is across ALL age ranges," he posted.

"Public Health have developed a very robust process which involves working with the school to agree action to be taken in order to prevent further transmissions. It does mean that any contacts must isolate for the full 10 days regardless of whether they receive a negative test – this is due to the incubation period as the infection can develop at any time within that period."

The Courier reported last week how schools had been hit by rising cases of coronavirus.

Public Health consultant Ben Leaman told members of Calderdale Council’s Children and Young People’s Services Scrutiny Board: "We are seeing really high rates in our young people at the moment and schools are really struggling with the amount of Covid-19 cases and the impact on children and young people."

The situation felt like stepping back to last year – but nevertheless Calderdale’s schools were doing a tremendous job meeting the challenge and offering quality education, he said.

He praised schools for stepping up testing.

But he warned Calderdale infection rates would get worse in the coming days and weeks and it was a sad time for this to happen, for example with Year 6 children due to leave their primary schools when the last thing they wanted to do was have to spend the last days in isolation.

Schools had been given resources to help with transition from primary to secondary school and links between health and wellbeing and education teams had never been stronger, he said.

Teams were waiting for guidance on how schools would operate in the new school year – such as whether “bubbles”, mask-wearing and social distancing would still be applied.

“Even with all the planning, Covid-19 is going to be disruptive for some time yet,” cautioned Mr Leaman, but he added vaccine take-up in Calderdale was really impressive and this time hospitalisations had been low.

He encouraged young people to keep conducting the lateral flow tests