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First COVID exposure in SD62 at high school in Colwood

COVID exposure at Royal Bay Secondary School on January 15, 2021

Monday January 18, 2021 | COLWOOD, BC [Updated 8 pm January 18, 2021 | Updated again 1:30 pm January 19, 2021]

by Mary P Brooke, editor | Island Social Trends

UPDATE POSTED at 1:30 pm January 19, 2021

Statement from the SD62 School District: “The school and district are being guided by Island Health officials with regard to the protocols and processes to be followed. Communication has gone out to families alerting them to the exposure and Island Health is completing contact tracing. Students and staff are encouraged to continue to follow health and safety protocols that have been established in SD62 schools.”

SD62, administration building, January 2021
SD62 has issued a statement to parents about the COVID exposure at Royal Bay Secondary. [Photo: SD62 administration building – January 2021 | Island Social Trends]

This evening (January 18) around 6:25 pm the Sooke School District (SD62) posted on Twitter that a COVID-19 exposure has happened at Royal Bay Secondary in Colwood.

“Royal Bay Secondary has experienced a COVID-19 exposure. Potential exposure date is Friday, January 15. Island Health is completing contact tracing. Thank you to the school community for your cooperation.”

SD62, COVID exposure, Tweet
SD62 posted a Tweet around 6:25 pm on Monday January 18, 2021 about a COVID exposure at Royal Bay Secondary School on January 15, 2021.

Royal Bay is the largest high school in SD62 which has schools across the west shore which serves families in Langford, Colwood, Sooke, Highlands, East Sooke, Metchosin, west of Sooke to Port Renfrew, and parts of View Royal. The student population is over 11,000 this year.

The Sooke Teachers Association has posted on Twitter a reminder to teachers to wear masks and keep physical distance.

Royal Bay Secondary School, Colwood, SD62
SD62’s Royal Bay Secondary School in Colwood is now the largest high school on Vancouver Island after the expansion of seats that opened in September 2020. [March 10, 2020 – Island Social Trends photo]

The exposure — which is believed to have occurred on Friday January 15 at the school — is not yet posted on the Island Health school exposures page (7:30 pm latest update).

As of 7:30 pm neither Island Health nor SD62 administration have identified whether it was a student, teacher or staff person who has tested positive for COVID-19. That sort of information may yet remain private.

UPDATE on School Exposures:

As of 2 pm on Wednesday January 19, here is the list of school exposures, now showing Royal Bay Secondary at the top of the list (most recent:

School Exposures 

School name Exposure eventDate 
Royal Bay Secondary School
3500 Ryder Hesjedal Way
Victoria, BC
ExposureJanuary 15, 2021
Chemainus Secondary School
9947 Daniel St.
Chemainus, BC
ExposureJanuary 4, 2021
St. Michaels University School (*Junior School) 
820 Victoria Ave
Victoria, BC
ExposureJanuary 5 & 6, 2021
NIDES/ Navigation  SD71 Distance Education
2505 Smith Road
Courtenay, BC
ExposureJanuary 4, 5 & 6, 2021
Duncan Christian School
495 Beech Ave
Duncan, BC
ClusterJanuary 6, 7, 8, 12, 13, 14 & 15 2021
Quamichan Middle School
2515 Beverly St
Duncan, BC
ExposureJanuary 4 & 5, 2021
Cowichan Secondary School
2652 James St
Duncan, BC
ExposureJanuary 5, 6 & 7, 2021
Miracle Beach Elementary School
(on school bus route)
8763 Paulsen Rd
Black Creek, BC
ExposureJanuary 4, 5, 6, 7 & 8, 2021
Alexander Elementary School
2471 Beverly Street
Duncan, BC
ExposureJanuary 13, 14, 15, 2021

COVID on Vancouver Island:

There are presently 184 active cases of COVID-19 on Vancouver Island, according to the BC Centre for Disease Control today (January 18).

In the pandemic-to-date there have been 81 children under the age of 10 who have tested positive for COVID-19 (10 of those in the last three days). Among kids and teens age 10 to 19 years there have been 128 cases pandemic-to-date on Vancouver Island (nine of those in the last three days).

BC CDC, Vancouver Island, January 18, 2021
COVID-19 case dashboard for Vancouver Island at January 18, 2021 [BC CDC]

At the moment there are 14 people in hospital in Island Health (three of those in ICU).

There were two more COVID deaths in Island Health over this past weekend, bringing the total of deaths to 17 during the pandemic on Vancouver Island.

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