London, Ont. –
Several schools have been temporarily closed due to COVID-19, including the first closure of a London high school for the current school year.
The London District Catholic School Board’s (LDCSB) website confirms that St. Andre Bessette in the city’s northwest end has been closed.
It is the result of many staff and students having to quarantine after possibly being exposed to the Omicron variant.
As of Monday there are four cases at the school and “more to come,” according to the LDCSB Director of Education Vince Romeo.
“It was because of the vast numbers of students affected and staff over multiple classrooms that we made the decision to move to remote learning for this week,” said Romeo.
Meanwhile the Thames Valley District School Board (TVDSB) has closed Westmount Public School ahead of the winter break.
According to the board there have been several close contacts with a confirmed case of COVID-19 with potential links to the Omicron variant.
The number of close contacts has made staffing the school a challenge and therefore it will shift to online learning for the final week.
The same also goes for Caradoc Public School in Mount Brydges. It will temporarily close starting Dec 14. The school will be transitioning to virtual learning until the end of the winter break.
The TVDSB had already closed Princess Elizabeth School last Thursday for similar reasons.
The schools are expected to reopen following the holiday break on Jan. 3, 2022.
In addition, two French-language school are closed according to the Conseil Scolaire Catholique Providence.
École élémentaire catholique Saint-Jean-de-Brébeuf and École élémentaire catholique Sainte-Jeanne-d’Arc are both closed.
They are the latest schools to be affected by a surge of cases in the community that has closed a number of schools.
St. Marguerite d’Youville School, St. Nicholas Catholic School and St. Mary Choir and Orchestra Catholic School were expected to reopen Monday after being closed for nearly a week.
On Monday Ontario reported 1,536 new COVID-19 cases as the positivity rate continues to climb.
– With files from CTV News London’s Jennifer Basa