Second staff member tests positive for COVID-19 at La Pommeraie
LONDON, ONT. -- The Middlesex-London Health Unit has been notified that another staff member at the public French board elementary school La Pommeraie tested positive for COVID-19 Wednesday.
On Monday, a staff member at the school also tested positive.
Dr. Chris Mackie, MLHU medical officer of health, says the two cases are not linked as they were from two different parts of the school.
"At this point we can’t find anything that indicates that there’s been any contact between the two individuals who tested positive so at this point we’re not declaring an outbreak at that school," he says.
The health unit says notification was sent to parents, guardians and staff of the school community shortly after confirmation, athough one parent tells CTV News she wasn't notified.
The health unit says initial close contacts were notified of the situation by letter and will receive further follow-up by phone from MLHU case investigators Thursday. These close contacts have also been advised to stay home from school and to quarantine.
MLHU investigators have determined that the person was at the school during the time they were infectious.
"As soon as we were informed about confirmed cases - first on Monday then yesterday late evening - we implemented our COVID-19 management guidelines with the Middlesex-London Health Unit," says a spokesperson for the Conseil Scolaire Viamonde school board.
"Concerned people are isolating at home and following the MLHU instructions as well, and we certainly hope they do not develop symptoms (and) recover soon."
The health unit is working with the Conseil Scolaire Viamonde, school administration and members of the school community to determine next steps.
“We continue to work with the school board and administration at La Pommeraie. We have not determined if there is a link to the previous case reported at the school earlier this week,” says Mackie.
“Given that it has been almost two weeks since this new case would have been infectious, it is encouraging that we have not had more reports of symptoms in members of the school community. We will be able to make a more complete determination as the investigation develops.”
Parents with children still attending school are doing their best to handle the news.
Hussein Zambian, the parent of a Grade 4 and a JK student is concerned.
“It is nerve racking, but it is what it is. We have to take it day by day. It’s hard, but the kids have to attend school, they have to get an education.”
Mackie say there is currently not enough data to shut this school. But, he says they will do it if they have to.
In the meantime parents face a choice. Another parent says, “I gonna see how it goes. I gonna call the school tomorrow, cause I don’t know any news.”
- With files from CTV London's Steve Young and Kathy Rumleski.