A Melbourne school has closed for a second time as coronavirus clusters push Victoria’s case numbers to the highest level in more than two months.
Keilor Downs Secondary College in Melbourne’s north-west will be closed from Monday for the second time in less than a month after a Year 10 pupil tested positive.
Principal Linda Maxwell sent a letter to parents saying close contacts of the student would be notified by Victoria’s Department of Health and Human Services on what action they must take.
Keilor Downs Secondary College in Melbourne’s northwest has shut for the second time in under a month after it was announced on Sunday that a Year 10 student has coronavirus
A health worker conducts a coronavirus swab test at a drive-through clinic in Keilor, Melbourne. The northwestern suburb is one epicentre of a number of new clusters in the state
‘There are six Year 10 classes involved and I will send a second notice with details,’ she wrote.
Monday had been scheduled as a pupil free day, however the school will now be closed for cleaning and contact tracing.
Melbourne schools shut for coronavirus
Camberwell Grammar School, Canterbury – student
Albanvale Primary School, Albanvale – teacher
Springside Primary School, Caroline Springs – teacher
St Mary’s Primary School, Hampton – student
St Monica’s College, Epping – teacher
Keilor Downs Secondary College, Keilor Downs – student
Victoria’s health department said on Sunday afternoon that the Keilor Downs pupil had attended the college for two days while infectious, and was linked to the family outbreak that has infected 11 people across nine households.
‘The school will conduct a deep clean of affected classrooms and common areas,’ the department said via email.
It is the second closure in less than a month for the school.
In the last week of May a teacher from the school tested positive, followed by a student, prompting a temporary school closure.
Students at three schools in Melbourne’s northwest – Keilor Downs, Taylors Lakes Secondary and St Albans Secondary College – had to be quarantined after coming in contact with the infectious pupil.
As Victoria’s case numbers spiked to levels not seen in more than two months, it was revealed over the weekend that six schools in total have new coronavirus infections.
St Monica’s College, a Catholic school of about 2000 students in Melbourne’s northern suburb of Epping, announced it would close until next term after a teacher tested positive.
The school will be closed from Monday until Term 3 begins on July 14.
Principal Brian Hanley told parents the school would conduct risk assessment and cleaning, with the health department to notify anyone affected.
‘All students are advised to remain at home while contact tracing occurs. They must limit movements to home-based activities and not attend public places,’ he wrote in an open letter on the school’s website.
St Monica’s College, Epping, Melbourne will close until the start of next term, using online learning to teach students after a teacher tested positive. Six schools in total have new cases
Online learning will begin on Tuesday.
A student from a third school, St Mary’s Primary School in Melbourne’s affluent southeastern suburb of Hampton, also tested positive on Saturday.
Two teachers from schools in Melbourne’s western suburbs have tested positive, one at Albanvale Primary School at Albanvale and one at Springside Primary School in Caroline Springs, also in the western suburbs, the Health Department said on Saturday.
A student at the elite private college Camberwell Grammar School in Melbourne’s eastern suburb of Canterbury was also revealed to have the virus on Saturday.
CORONAVIRUS CASES IN AUSTRALIA: 7,461
New South Wales: 3,149
Western Australia: 605
South Australia: 440
Australian Capital Territory: 108
Northern Territory: 29
TOTAL CASES: 7,461
It is understood that the schools must close until Wednesday at a minimum.
‘The schools will conduct a deep clean of affected classrooms and common areas. Contact tracing is under way and testing will be undertaken as appropriate,’ the Health Department said.
Victoria’s cases spiked by 19 on Sunday to a total of 1836, after four days of double-digit growth.
Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews was forced to reimpose tough restrictions within his state after 25 new cases were recorded on Saturday.
From midnight on Sunday to July 12, Victorians will only be able to have five people at their homes. Outdoor gatherings will be restricted to 10.
Cafes, restaurants and pubs had been set to be allowed 50 patrons at one time on Monday, up from 20 currently. That will also be put on hold until July 12.
Health authorities in Queensland, South Australia and Western Australia are now wary of reopening their borders, not wanting to suffer a second wave of infections.
The Victorian outbreak has also disrupted football with Essendon’s star AFL player Conor McKenna testing positive after returning from Ireland.
Australia’s federal Health Department chart from Sunday showing the proportion of locally acquired infections is still outnumbered by those from overseas
Although his teammates have not tested positive so far, Sunday’s match at the MCG between the Bombers and Melbourne was postponed.
Australia’s coronavirus total rose to 7461 on Sunday evening of which most are recovered. There are 215 people still sick, two in intensive care and 102 people dead so far.
Worldwide, the pandemic is surging.
Coronavirus has so far infected 8.9 million people of which 4.7 million have recovered, 3.7 million are still sick and 467,029 are dead.
The US has been the hardest hit so far with almost a quarter of all cases, with 2.3 million infected and 121,983 dead.