Wigan borough high school closes to all but one year group after Covid-19 outbreak

Every year group bar one at a borough high school has been told to stay at home after a rise in positive Covid-19 cases among pupils.
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St Mary's Catholic High School in Manchester Road, Astley, has instructed all but Year 7 students to stay home, after a "significant number" of students tested positive with lateral flow tests at the weekend.

All children in Years 8 to 13, which includes the school's college students, have been affected by the Covid outbreak and will therefore attend classes remotely via Zoom until further notice.

A number of staff have also returned positive tests.

St Mary's in AstleySt Mary's in Astley
St Mary's in Astley
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In a letter to parents sent at the weekend, the school's headteacher Andrew Dawson said he was "frustrated" at having to close the school to so many pupils so soon after reopening, and that Public Health England were being consulted on the best course of action.

He wrote: "I am writing to inform you that we have had a significant number of positive LFD test results today which is a concern and is in addition to the positive cases from last week.

"The cases have come across all years with the exception of year 7 and there have been a number of staff cases too. I do not want to make a knee jerk and ill-informed decision but neither do I want to do anything unsafe.

"With this in mind I am closing the school tomorrow [Monday] for face-to-face education for all students except those in Year 7. This will enable us to ensure there is a pause in any possible transmission and hold a meeting with Public Health England tomorrow who can provide us with the most informed advice."

Mr Dawson went on: "I am frustrated to be making this decision so soon after our return but believe it is the most balanced approach."