Starting today, Tuesday March 16, Ponoka Secondary Campus (PSC) is temporarily shifting to online learning due to a rise in positive COVID-19 cases within the school community.
The number of active cases ballooned over the weekend, from one confirmed case on March 11 to nine active cases as of Monday, March 15.
“The cases this past weekend and today have continued to have a significant impact on the entire school,” states the letter posted on wolfcreek.ab.ca.
The decision was made in consultation with Alberta Education to move to online learning for all PSC students and staff from March 16 until April 5.
The March break begins March 26, accounting for the additional week.
The reason stated for the move to online learning was the number of staff and students currently unable to attend the school due to self-isolation requirements.
“There is a significant concern for the school to operationally maintain instruction and support students while also, ensuring the school is a safe environment for all students and staff,” said WCPS.
“Based on a comprehensive review of the situation with the PSC administration and Alberta Education officials, we believe this decision is in the best interests of students and staff for continued optimal learning including limiting possible additional exposure.”
In-person learning is set to resume on April 6, however, WCPS and Alberta Health Services (AHS) will make an assessment a week prior to that date.
Ponoka Elementary School
Although AHS has declared an outbreak status at Ponoka Elementary School (PES), there are currently only three active cases. However, because the current three cases occurred within 28 days of previous cases in February, an outbreak was declared.
AHS reports an outbreak when five or more cases are confirmed in an investigation and an outbreak investigation is considered over when there have been no new confirmed cases in the school for 28 days.