COVID-19 outbreak declared at St. Marguerite d’Youville Catholic School in northwest London

Saint Marguerite D'Youville Catholic Elementary School at 170 Hawthorne Road in London, Ont. via Google Maps

A second case tied to the London District Catholic School Board’s St. Marguerite d’Youville grade school has prompted the Middlesex-London Health Unit to declare an outbreak.

The health unit says it was notified late Monday that “an additional member” of the school community tested positive for COVID-19 and that the case “appears to be associated with a previous one” reported on Saturday, suggesting transmission between the cases.

Read more: Coronavirus case confirmed at John Paul II Catholic S.S., 2 elementary schools in London, Ont.

The school will remain open, the health unit says, but staff and students “in classrooms identified as having had close contact with the cases will be excluded from attending school.”

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The MLHU says it is working with LDCSB administration and members of the school community to provide support to those excluded from school as part of the outbreak response.

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“The declaration of an outbreak is a critical step in limiting any further spread of the virus within this school community,” says associate medical officer of health Dr. Alex Summers.

“Transmission of COVID-19 within a school has been a rare occurrence in the Middlesex-London region. Health Unit staff will continue to follow up with affected families and staff members to provide support and advice on next steps.”

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On Monday, before the second confirmed case at St. Marguerite d’Youville, medical officer of health Dr. Chris Mackie was asked about school transmission within the MLHU’s jurisdiction during an afternoon COVID-19 update.

“We’ve only had one case of COVID that’s been documented to be likely acquired in a school in London and Middlesex, whereas we’ve had over 40 now among students and staff that were acquired elsewhere. And we also know that we’ve had more than one case of COVID acquired in students that were involved in remote learning,” Mackie said at the time.