Gatineau elementary student sent home with COVID-19 symptoms

A student at Lord Aylmer Elementary School in Gatineau, Que. was sent home with symptoms of COVID-19 on Wednesday, a school board official says.

Child was present at school for about 3 hours, school board official says

A student at Lord Aylmer Elementary School in Gatineau, Que. was sent home Wednesday after experiencing symptoms of COVID-19. (Kimberley Molina/CBC)

A student at Lord Aylmer Elementary School in Gatineau, Que., was sent home with symptoms of COVID-19 on Wednesday, a school board official says.

Mike Dubeau, director general of the Western Quebec School Board, said he cannot comment on specifics of the case, like the child's age or gender, but he is confident all protocols were followed. 

The student was at the school for approximately three hours before they went home, he said.

"All social distancing protocols are in place for cases just like this. We need to try and keep everybody safe," said Dubeau.

Quebec opened elementary schools in all areas except for Montreal on Monday. Students at the Western Quebec School Board went back Tuesday, after a PD day for teachers on Monday. 

Dubeau said classrooms at the school are currently limited to only five or six students and desks are spaced to follow the Ministry of Education's guidelines.

Students and staff also practise physical distancing in the hallways and conduct proper handwashing, he said.

'A safe environment for students'

 As soon as the child reported not feeling well, they were sent to an isolation room and outfitted with personal protective equipment until they were picked up by their parents, Dubeau said. 

The school has also contacted public health officials, said Dubeau. 

Dubeau said schools were ready and trained to receive students this week and he is not surprised that this happened. 

"It's probably going to happen again. Students get sick on a regular basis and it's not always COVID," he said. 

"With the protocols we have in place, I'm confident that we're providing, as much as possible, a safe environment for students."

Dubeau said the school has contacted all parents of students in the child's class. 

About the Author

Natalia is a multi-platform journalist in Ottawa. She has also worked for CBC in P.E.I. and Newfoundland and Labrador.

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