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St Andrews Primary School’s P4 class closes for rest of term

St Andrews Primary School has a total of 20 confirmed PCR cases of COVID-19 and 2 further positive lateral flow tests as of 11am today Friday, December 17, according to an update from Orkney Islands Council.

Class teachers continue to provide work online using the Seesaw tool and, in addition, pupils from the closed P4 class have been sent a pack of activities. Given the small, but continual, increase in positive lateral flow test results among the pupils of the closed P4 class it has been decided to keep the P4 class closed for the remainder of term. This means that the P4 class will not reopen now until after the festive holiday break. However, any parents with an urgent need for childcare on Monday and Tuesday next week and who have remained negative throughout are asked to contact the school who will try and make arrangements to accommodate them.

The decision was made at today’s incident meeting and agreed by representatives from the council’s Education Directorate, Schools, Environmental Health, Safety and Resilience, Sport and Leisure and Community Learning and Development.

Executive director of education, leisure and housing, James Wylie, said: “Given the small, but steady, increase in positive lateral flow tests and PCRs in the P4 class, the fact that we are so close to the Christmas break and the understandable anxiety among parents borne out by the low numbers of children in attendance, and the uncertainty surrounding the new variant, we have made the decision to maintain the closure of the P4 class. We recognise that there may be parents who are unable to work as a result of the closure – we would encourage them to contact the school who will do all they can to assist.”

Parents in this position should contact the head teacher Mark Taylor directly on his school glow email address. Mr Taylor will respond on Sunday.

Members continue to appeal for folk to be vigilant for symptoms and to continue with lateral flow tests and to log the results online whether negative or positive. This allows Public Health to begin contact tracing straight away.

All new testing procedures are outlined here https://www.ohb.scot.nhs.uk/news/community-testing-service-update-procedure-15-november-2021

Ceri Dare, environmental technical officer is available for free advice and support around COVID-secure requirements and best practice. She can be contacted on 01856 873535 ext 2817.