Wellington Scoop

Two Nelson schools close after staff members test positive for covid

Report from RNZ
A Nelson school that has been closed after a staff member tested positive for Covid-19 anticipates up to 40 students and staff may be close contacts.

Enner Glynn School is one of two in Nelson closed because of a positive case. A learning support worker who was at the school on Monday and Tuesday tested positive on Wednesday after being told he was a close contact of another case.

Principal Isaac Day said families of students identified as contacts will receive an email today outlining the category of contact.

“We’ve been advised by Health and the Ministry of Education that he has potentially been infectious [on] Monday and Tuesday while he was at school,” Day said.

“At this stage we’re still working though [the contact-tracing] process but we expect there’s between 20 and 30 students and possibly up to 10 staff. We are closed so we can manage the contact-tracing process … and collect all the data for public health.”

Day said all staff at the school were vaccinated, including the staff member who tested positive.

“He was fully vaccinated and and he received his second dose I think just over a week and a half ago.”

The second Nelson school, Broadgreen Intermediate, has told parents it had a positive case who was infectious from last Thursday. There are number of close contacts who have been told to get tested immediately and isolate at home.

Director-General of Health Ashley Bloomfield told Morning Report the latest group of cases in Nelson are separate from the first case in Nelson. They relate to a person who had several workplace and flatmate contacts.

“Through the contact tracing and follow-up testing … [we] identified a couple of staff members at different schools who were [tested and received positive results], recalling that all staff at schools are now required to be vaccinated.”

The staff were not symptomatic, he said, and the schools had followed the guidelines.

The last day employees in the education sector had to get at least one dose was 15 November, and they are required to be fully vaccinated by the end of this year.

“One of the reasons the mandate was put in place was to help protect children in schools [while they cannot get vaccinations],” he said.

“The vast majority of our cases that are under the age of 12 in the outbreak to date right across the country, but obviously largely in Auckland, had been infected in the home by other household contacts, not in school or early childhood education setting.” Health measures would be used rather than any lockdown being needed in Nelson, Bloomfield said.

Nelson’s high vaccination rate and other measures like contact tracing and isolation rules would provide a high level of protection for the region, he said. “We’ll use our contact tracing and testing and isolation as we have in other places.”

Earlier report from RNZ
Two Nelson schools are closed today after staff members tested positive for Covid-19.

Enner Glynn School says health officials have told it one person got a positive result back yesterday and was infectious since Monday. Broadgreen Intermediate has told parents it has one case who was infectious from last Thursday. There are number of close contacts who have been told to get tested immediately and isolate at home.

The schools are still trying to work out which children may have been exposed.

It’s not clear if these cases are in addition to the four cases already reported by the Ministry of Health.

There was one new case in Nelson reported earlier yesterday.

The ministry said that new case was not linked to existing cases in the area and the public health unit was investigating a possible source of infection.

Anyone with symptoms is being urged to get tested.

News from Ministry of Health – November 30
There are two new covid cases in the Nelson-Tasman region, both known contacts of the local case announced yesterday.

All three cases are in isolation, with investigations into the source of infection ongoing. So far, initial case interviews have identified a small number of close contacts, who are also isolating with testing arranged.

The Nelson Marlborough Public Health Service would like to thank the cases for their co-operation; this has enabled health staff to determine a range of initial locations of interest across Nelson and Tasman. These locations are listed on the Ministry’s website, with further locations expected.

People in the Nelson-Tasman region are asked to monitor the Ministry’s locations of interest page, which is updated regularly.

We are also asking anyone in the Nelson-Tasman region with symptoms – no matter how mild – to please get tested, even if they are vaccinated – and remain isolated until they return a negative test result.

Testing is available at:

Stoke CBAC: Saxton Field parking area, Suffolk Rd, Stoke
· 9am to 6pm Tuesday 30 November to Friday 3 December

Nelson CBAC: Trafalgar Centre carpark, Paru Paru Rd
· 9am to 6pm Tuesday 30 November

Additional testing capacity, to ensure good coverage, is underway and details will be available on the Healthpoint website. Testing is also available at GP and Urgent Care clinics.

We are also calling for people to get vaccinated, with many sites available across the region. Vaccination clinic locations are available on the Nelson Marlborough Health website.

A total of 134 new covid cases were reported in New Zealand today, most of them in Auckland, the others in Northland, Waikato, Bay of Plenty, as well as Nelson/Marlborough.
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