The HSE’s chief clinical officer has appealed to people not to send their children to school if they are sick, particularly in the run-up to exams.
Speaking at the weekly HSE briefing, Dr Colm Henry said that an increased number of Covid-19 outbreaks had been observed in schools since their reopening, with clusters of outbreaks reported across the country including in Cork.
He said that these outbreaks generally have been associated with small numbers, except in a number of instances where there have been a significant number of cases and sometimes outbreaks between school settings.
“There have been clusters of outbreaks throughout this term right across the country, in Offaly and in Cork and other places. The same theme has come through all the time — the great majority have involved three or four cases.”
“The strong message we are trying to give is that if your children are sick, not to go to school,” he said.
"That’s the right thing to do — it protects other people particularly coming up to exam times.”
He urged those preparing for State exams to “avoid anything outside and in between the school setting that would allow transmission of the virus”.
In recent weeks, a number of schools in Cork have reported cases of Covid-19 within their school population.
Among them is Scoil Bhríde in Rathcormac. The school’s board of management is due to meet today to review the situation after a number of the cases of the virus were reported there.
Earlier this week, the school informed parents that every class at the school has been affected by Covid since an outbreak in the school emerged a week ago. Staff have also been affected. Parents were advised of two new cases yesterday.
Last month, Pobalscoil na Tríonóide in Youghal temporarily closed its doors after a number of cases of the virus were identified in the school population.
The entire school body was subsequently offered screening for the virus.