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2 more outbreaks reported in Hamilton public schools, cases top 100 since return

The Edmonton Public School Board is calling on the government to implement a "firebreak," which would see schools across the province shift to online learning for a minimum of two weeks. Global News

A pair of Hamilton schools joined the list of COVID-19 outbreaks according to public health on Friday, bringing the total number of learning facilities in an active surge to eight.

Central Elementary School and Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Elementary School in East Hamilton each reported a pair of cases among students on Thursday.

There are now a total of 25 cases in all eight outbreaks among 22 students and three staff members.

Read more: COVID-19 cases in Hamilton schools rise as Ontario reports over 1,000 province-wide

Six of the outbreaks are at the Hamilton Wentworth District School Board (HWDSB), while two are with the Catholic board (HWCDSB).

None of the schools in Hamilton have been closed as a result of the outbreaks.

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An outbreak in a school is defined as two or more lab-confirmed cases in students, staff or other visitors with an epidemiological link, according to public health.

Cases must also be within a 14-day period where at least one case could have “reasonably acquired their infection in the school.” That also includes transportation and before or after school care.

Since the first week of school, the city’s public schools have now topped 100 cases in all with 91 tied to students.

The HWDSB has had 59 of the student cases with 55 from elementary schools and four from secondary institutions. Fifty-six of those cases have been recorded in the last 14 days.

The HWCDSB has had 22 student cases in the last 14 days.

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The province is also reporting three cases among two private Hamilton schools.

There are now close to 1,500 cases among schools in Ontario since early September with more than 1,200 active cases tied to students.

Hamilton reports 68 new COVID-19 cases, 19 ongoing outbreaks

Public health reported one other outbreak on Thursday at a martial arts school in Stoney Creek. There are seven total cases among six students and a single staffer.

Read more: Ontario reports 727 new COVID-19 cases, 11 more deaths

Hamilton has 19 active outbreaks as of Friday tied to 83 total cases. Of the surges, only one is reporting a death – Macassa Lodge, where a resident aged 80-plus died this week, according to public health.

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Three facilities with seniors homes – Macassa Lodge, Pine Villa Care and St. Joseph’s Village – account for 28 of the current cases recorded in outbreaks across Hamilton.

The city reported another 68 new COVID-19 cases in total on Friday and saw a day-over-day bump in its seven-day average of new cases by four to 39.

Active cases were up by 23 in the last 24 hours to 299.

More than 70 per cent of active cases are among those under the age of 50, while just over 28 per cent of cases are among people aged 20 to 29.

One person has moved out of a COVID unit between the city’s two hospitals in the last 24 hours with three people transferred out of intensive care (ICU). Hamilton Health Sciences (HHS) and St. Joe’s have 38 COVID patients combined, with 13 in ICUs.

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