5 London schools announce closures due to COVID-19

Two high schools and one elementary school are now closed due to outbreaks of COVID-19 in London, Ont.

Students will study remotely during the closures at the Ontario schools

The London District Catholic School Board has closed St. Andre Besette Catholic Secondary School. Two other schools from other boards have also been shut, all related to COVID-19. (Dave Chidley/CBC)

Two high schools and three elementary schools have been closed due to outbreaks of COVID-19 in London, Ont.

The closures impact all three school boards in the area as the city sees case counts continuing to rise. 

In-person classes at St. Andre Bessette Catholic Secondary School are expected to resume after the Christmas break, as of Monday. 

A number of students and staff are quarantining as a result of multiple likely and/or confirmed positive omicron variant cases, the London District Catholic Board said in a statement.

In the case of Westmount Public School, the Thames Valley District School Board determined there are numerous close contacts from a confirmed case of COVID-19 at the school, with potential links to the omicron variant. 

The French-language Catholic board, Conseil  scolaire catholique Providence – London and Middlesex, has closed St. Jean de Brebeuf elementary,  Ste. Jeanne-d'Arc elementary and Mgr-Bruyère secondary school. Effective Monday and for the remainder of this week, these schools will shift to virtual learning.

The MIddlesex-London Health Unit's guidelines now require that direct contacts of a positive case at St. Jean de Brebeuf isolate, regardless of vaccination status, the board said in a letter to parents. This has led to a significant staffing shortage. 

All students at these schools will learn remotely during the closures.

There were 32 cases of COVID-19 reported by the health unit at local schools since Friday, including 29 cases in elementary schools and three in high schools. There have now been 358 cases at schools since September, with over 82 per cent in elementary schools (295 cases).

There are 15 active outbreaks within the health region, including Delaware Centre School and École élémentaire catholique Ste-Jeanne-d'Arc, which were declared over the weekend.