COVID-19 exposures at Valleyview Public School have been ruled an outbreak by the Northwestern Health Unit.

Leadership with the Keewatin-Patricia District School Board says they’ve been advised by the NWHU that spread within Valleyview’s closed classroom cannot be ruled out, and it's now been reclassified to an outbreak.

A COVID-19 outbreak is defined as having two or more lab-confirmed COVID-19 cases in students and/or staff within a 14-day period, where at least one case could have been acquired within the school setting.

All impacted students and staff have been contacted, and students are continuing to learn virtually.

The KPDSB first reported exposures at Valleyview Public School on November 20. As a result, one classroom was closed.

By November 23, the KPDSB said the NWHU’s investigation had found an additional COVID-19 exposure impacting the closed classroom, but that exposure had plausible and likely sources outside of the school. They also stressed it was not considered an outbreak at the time.

The NWHU is reminding families that the most common risk of COVID-19 in our area has always been, and continues to be, contact with people in private homes. The NWHU recommends continuing to practice physical distancing when getting together with people outside of your household and masking when distancing is not possible.

All students and families are reminded to use Ontario’s COVID-19 school and childcare screening tool daily before attending school. Anyone with symptoms of illness is asked to stay home.