School closes early for Easter after outbreak

A RANDALSTOWN primary school has closed early for Easter after an outbreak of COVID-19.

Mount St Michael’s made the decision after a number of positive test results.

Principal Geraldine Carville told parents: “We have another COVID positive case in the school community and several others, both staff and children, being tested.

“I have carried out a risk assessment in consultation with the Public Health Agency, the Education Authority and the Chair of Governors.

“Unfortunately, at this stage the risk to the school and the wider community is presently too high for the school to remain open and we are therefore reverting to remote learning for the three school days this week.

“We will be unable to provide supervised learning and after schools will also be closed.

“I am sure you will be appreciate that this has been an extremely difficult decision to make and I assure you that it has not been taken lightly.

“I am confident that it is the right decision, in the best interests of everyone’s safety.

“I would ask you to be very vigilant for symptoms of Covid in your family, book a test if concerned and notify the school if there is a positive result.

“Sore throats are now increasingly being seen as a symptom, as are stomach bugs in children.

“We will continue to support you in whatever way we can, staff will remain available remotely up to and including Wednesday.

“Children in (four teacher’s) classes should continued to isolate as previously notified.

“I truly hope that you all remain safe, as always please feel free to contact me on my email if I can be of any help.

“Take care and God bless.”

SDLP councillor Ryan Wilson said that the school had done the right thing.

“I fully support the difficult decision by the Principal and Governors of Mount St Michael's Primary School Randalstown, to close early before Easter.” he said.

“The health, safety and well-being of the staff, pupils and families are paramount.

“We have been very fortunate to have avoided closures before now and this should remind us all of the need to extremely vigilant of the COVID symptoms in children, which include sore throats and stomach bugs, and also for parents - loss of taste or smell, fever and continuous cough.

“If any of your family display these symptoms then you must take action immediately and book a test. By working together we can keep our schools and wider community safe.

“As we approach Easter we must continue to act responsibly and to follow the advice and guidance issued by the Public Health Agency, it is essential that we continue to do this to ensure that when schools return they are not affected by further COVID closures.”

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