The Sheffield schools forced to close classes due to coronavirus infections this week

These schools have been forced to send groups of pupils and staff home to self-isolate following confirmed cases of coronavirus.

By Sam Ward
Thursday, 15th October 2020, 1:36 pm

Following the announcement that Sheffield has been placed in Tier 2 of the latest restriction structure due to the high infection rate, schools across the city have also been forced to send staff and students home to self-isolate due to confirmed cases.

Malin Bridge Primary School has been forced to close its nursery after a member of the nursery staff tested positive for the virus.

In a letter sent out on Saturday, October 10, the school announced ‘all children and staff in the nursery’ will have to isolate for 14 days, and the nursery will not re-open until October 21.

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A member of staff wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) takes a child's temperature (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

The school will remain open.

At Nether Edge Primary, pupils in year 6, as well as teachers in ‘direct contact’, have been sent home and asked to isolate after a confirmed case in the school.

Westways Primary School in S10 sent a letter home to parents earlier this week informing them that they had been ‘made aware’ of a positive case of Covid-19 in the school.

The letter stated that children who have been in ‘close contact’ with the individual have been asked to self-isolate for 14 days.

Yesterday, October 14, Westbourne School sent home a similar letter to parents, and children in close contact with the infected individual have been asked to stay at home and isolate.

Both of these primary schools are remaining open.

Some students at Outwood Academy have also been asked to isolate following a confirmed case of coronavirus in year 9.

A letter sent out to parents yesterday, October 14, said: “As soon as we were made aware of the situation today we sought specific advice from the Local Authority Public Health Team and Public Health England and are following the given advice with the actions outlined in this letter.”

Students and staff that had ‘prolonged contact’ with the student infected have been asked to isolate.

Birley Primary Academy and Manor Lodge Primary School have also had confirmed cases, with the individuals in contact being asked to isolate.

Andrew Jones, Director of Education at Sheffield City Council said: “All our schools are currently open, however some children, young people, and staff have been sent home to isolate.

“Where there is an incidence of Covid-19 the school will continue to carry out appropriate health and safety measures with support from our Public Health team at Sheffield City Council to work out the best course of action.”

If Sheffield were to be placed into ‘Tier 3’, schools would be able to remain open, but bubbles and year groups may continue to be told to isolate should there be a confirmed positive case of coronavirus.

It has also been announced that a circuit-breaker lockdown would aim to coincide with school holidays to avoid closing education facilities during this period.

Sheffield’s Director of Public Health, Greg Fell, said closing all schools again as part of Tier 3 restrictions would be ‘off-limits’.

He said: "Education is definitely off limits (to close schools), work is definitely off limits, that leaves other social mixing.”