Some Cork Leaving Certs return to online classes amid concerns about growing Covid numbers

Some Cork Leaving Certs return to online classes amid concerns about growing Covid numbers

The development follows a number of cases at Scoil Bhríde in Rathcormac, where there are cases at every class level and among staff. Pic Larry Cummins

SOME Leaving Certificate students are returning to online classes in Fermoy as concerns grow about Covid-19 cases in the wider east and north Cork area.

There has been one confirmed case each at Loreto and the nearby St Colman’s College secondary schools, while Coláiste an Chraoibhín has also been affected.

The development follows a number of cases at Scoil Bhríde in Rathcormac, where there are cases at every class level and among staff.

There have been three confirmed cases in Scoil Náisiúnta an Chroí Naofa primary school in Glounthaune.

There has also been one confirmed case each at Watergrasshill NS and Scoil an Athar Tadhg in Carrignavar.

Sports training has been cancelled at St Colman’s College, while similar measures have been put in place at Bride Rovers juvenile GAA club. Watergrasshill GAA club has also cancelled training.

In a statement to The Echo yesterday evening, Watergrasshill GAA said: “We just took a decision today to cancel all trainings for the next week. It wasn’t forced on us or asked of us, we just took a proactive approach based on a reported possible increase in positive cases.

“It’s a precautionary measure to protect club members and a way we can play our part as a circuit breaker to unnecessary spread of the virus.”

Grange-Fermoy Athletics club informed members yesterday that training is being suspended for a week “due to the current level of Covid in the greater Fermoy area”.

The emergence of Covid in the area came last week with confirmed cases in Scoil Bhríde in Rathcormac. It is not known how many cases are in the school community.

In a statement yesterday, school principal Margaret Howard said: “The situation is constantly evolving. Undoubtedly, the recent cyber attack on the HSE IT system has impacted hugely on the accessing and the processing of information and has confounded difficulties.

“We will continue to work closely with Public Health HSE South to ensure the safety of our staff, pupils and the wider Rathcormac community going forward. A public health risk assessment has been carried out, with close contacts being identified and advised accordingly by HSE.”

An email sent on Sunday night to parents said: “We now have cases at every class level and among school staff. We have yet to be notified of the results from many of the Covid-19 tests that were administered over the last few days.”

It said advice was sought on closing the school but “Public Health did not deem it necessary at this time”.

However, the email warned parents that the board of management may have to make the decision in the coming days to advise parents not to send their children to school.

A HSE spokeswoman said: “The identification and tracing of any cases linked to any educational institutions in this region have not been impacted by current IT issues.”

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