COVID-19 school-related cases jump in Niagara

·2 min read

Since late October, COVID-19 school-related cases in Niagara have been on on the rise. Over that time frame, 10 schools have been affected by COVID-19 cases that have resulted in 11 individuals in self-isolation.

The provincial database that records school-related COVID-19 cases listed nine of the cases as “confirmed student cases” and the remaining two are identified as “confirmed staff cases”.

The provincial database indicates that five of the schools are located in St Catharines, two in Niagara Falls, two in Welland and one in Port Colborne.

The public board accounts for four of the cases affecting four different schools and Catholic board accounts for the remaining seven cases affecting six different schools.

The jump in school-related cases comes at a time when the province is dealing with an increase. Over the last 14 days, case counts in Ontario have gone up an average of 3.895 per cent.

Provincial modelling indicates that Ontario could see as many as 6,500 new cases of COVID-19 daily by mid-December unless steps are taken to limit the spread of the virus.

The new modelling indicates that the province will reach 2,500 new daily cases by that time if the growth rate is at three per cent, or 6,500 if growth is at five per cent.

Dr. Adalsteinn Brown, who is advising the province on its pandemic response, presented the projections at a news conference Thursday. Brown said a five per cent growth rate is in line with the current situation, or even “slightly optimistic.”

The release of the new modelling numbers coincides with Niagara’s top public health official, Mustafa Hirji imposing new COVID-19 measures on local restaurants and bars.

Sean Vanderklis is a Niagara-based reporter for the Niagara Falls Review. His reporting is funded by the Canadian government through its Local Journalism Initiative. Reach him via email: svanderklis@metroland.com

Sean Vanderklis, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Niagara Falls Review