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Pupil at Dingwall Academy tests positive for Covid-19; Coronavirus transmission at Highland Council secondary school occurred outwith premises, parents told

By Hector MacKenzie

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A CASE of Covid-19 has been notified at Ross-shire's largest secondary school.

The notification at Dingwall Academy follows confirmation earlier in the week of a positive test of a pupil at Tain Royal Academy in Easter Ross.

In a letter to parents, rector Karen Cormack said no close contacts had been identified within the school following the positive test and that the pupil concerned "has not accessed the school premises this week as they have been in self-isolation".

Three close contacts have been identified by NHS Highland’s Health Protection Team (HPT) and are currently self-isolating.

The HPT has advised that "the transmission occurred outside the school premises and that no further individuals from the school will be required to self-isolate at this time".

Ms Cormack said: "We understand that a positive case of coronavirus can cause some local anxiety within our community. Please be assured that we are working closely with our colleagues in Highland Council and NHS Highland to monitor the situation and will continue to follow national guidance to help reduce the risk of the spread of Covid-19 in our setting.Our school’s risk assessment is regularly reviewed."

A copy can be found at http://www.dingwallacademy.com/media/other/26151/RevisedriskassessmentOctober2020.pdf

A Highland Council spokesperson said: "We are aware of a positive Covid case at Dingwall Academy. NHS Highland’s Health Protection Team advised no further actions for the school are required at this time."

Earlier in the week, it was confirmed an S2 pupil at Tain Royal Academy had tested positive and that around 20 other pupils had been asked to isolate as a precaution under close contact guidelines.

Five pupils at Knockbreck Primary in the town were also asked to isolate.

Schools have issued guidance to parents and carers about what steps to take if a child develops Covid-19 symptoms:

It says that a test should be booked as soon as possible. "If a test is required, you can arrange this via NHS Inform.

"Once a positive case is confirmed in a house, then all other household members who remain well must stay at home and not leave the house for 14 days. The 14-day period starts from the day when the first person in the

house became ill. Household members in these circumstances should not go to work, school, public areas or use public transport."

Steps to help stay safe in school - https://bit.ly/StaySafeInSchool

NHS Inform - https://www.nhsinform.scot/

Scottish Government guidance for schools - https://bit.ly/SchoolGuidanceSG

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