North Somerset schools reopening delayed following Weston hospital coronavirus outbreak

PUBLISHED: 13:03 30 May 2020 | UPDATED: 13:03 30 May 2020

The reopening of schools in North Somerset has been delayed. Picture: Getty

The reopening of schools in North Somerset has been delayed. Picture: Getty

Family Veldman (Family Veldman (Photographer) - [None]

Schools in North Somerset have been advised to delay re-opening for another week until there is more information on the coronavirus outbreak at Weston General Hospital.

North Somerset Council has contacted all schools and advised them to delay until Monday, June 8 as a precautionary measure.

On Friday, May 29 it was revealed there had been no new cases at the hospital and the council said to date there was no evidence the outbreak had spread any further than those who already have it.

But it wants to wait for the full data from the health trust and its analysis by Public Health England before re-opening schools to more pupils.

Mike Bell, deputy leader and executive member for public health at the council said: “We are encouraging schools to stay closed for a further week.

“We think it is sensible wait until we have a clearer picture of how the virus might be spreading in our community before they open their doors to a wider group of pupils and parents.

“There is currently no evidence to suggest any increased risk of infection in the community as a result of the outbreak at the hospital, however, we need to have sight of all the data from the hospital alongside community indicators so that our public health team and colleagues in Public Health England can review the full implications of the outbreak.

“This is purely a precautionary measure, but we want to be satisfied that the work is complete before we advise schools to re-open more widely.”

Cllr Catherine Gibbons, executive member for children’s services added: “I have asked for this delay and it is right that schools push-back opening while we seek assurances that there is no increased risk of infection from community spread.

“We will continue to support our schools with the decisions they make about when the time is right for them to re-open – each setting’s circumstances is different. Ultimately the decision rests with the school’s leadership and governing body.”


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