An Abbotsford independent middle school is temporarily closed due to six COVID-19 cases as of Monday (Nov. 16).
All staff and students at Abbotsford Christian School (ACS) have been asked to self-isolate until Nov. 23.
A letter from the school was issued to families on Sunday (Nov. 15), indicating that Fraser Health had determined that the site was experiencing “several COVID-19 cases that cross multiple cohorts.”
The letter stated that the self-isolation period was to run from Nov. 9 to 23. (The school was closed for Remembrance Day on Nov. 11, and Nov. 12 and 13 were professional development days.)
Fraser Health confirmed the six cases in a press release issued late Monday afternoon.
“As a precautionary measure, Abbotsford Christian School has advised Fraser Health that they will functionally close the middle school for a two-week period due to the staffing challenges presented by the exposure,” the release states.
The letter from ACS said that Fraser Health is also looking into ACS’s elementary and secondary campuses and will “recommend a way forward soon.”
In the meantime, there will be no in-class instruction at those sites on Tuesday, Nov. 17, while more information is gathered. (Monday, Nov. 16 was already scheduled as a non-school day.)
“Staff at all campuses will be working to prepare for next steps. In terms of how education will look at each campus, the principals will be following up with staff and families to explain a way forward,” the letter states.
The current number of known cases is not listed, but a statement from ACS on Saturday indicated that there were six at that time: one at the elementary campus, four at the middle school and one at the secondary.
Meanwhile, another local independent school, Mennonite Educational Institute, has also had several recent COVID-19 cases.
Families have received several notices this month – on Nov. 11, 13 and 15 – and Fraser Health has listed the exposure dates as Nov. 4-6, 9 and 10.
The agency contacts families directly when it is believed their child may have been exposed to an individual confirmed to have the virus, and provides further instruction.
Students who don’t receive a phone call or letter are advised to continue to attend school, but to monitor for symptoms.