At least five schools in Essex have been closed or partially closed due to confirmed cases of coronavirus.
Since the start of September when the new academic year started schools up and down the country have had confirmed cases of the virus.
Schools across Essex have been forced to send pupils and staff home to self-isolate.
Some schools have been able to close down single ‘bubbles’, which may involve just a classroom or sometimes a whole year group.
Others have opted to close the whole school as a precaution before reopening when they had assessed the situation and a deep clean had taken place.
The most recent educational establishment to confirm a Covid-19 case was the University of Essex on Friday (September 25).
Sadly, since the R rate has increased and cases continue to also, it is likely that disruption in schools due to Covid-19 will continue.
Below is a list of some of the schools in Essex which have had confirmed cases of Covid-19:
University of Essex
A statement published on the university’s website on Friday, September 25 states “a small number” of positive cases had been confirmed.
The university has three campuses, in Colchester, Loughton and Southend-On-Sea but the university has confirmed the affected students do not live on the Colchester campus.
The University says it is working with the Essex contact tracing team to identify anyone who may have been in contact with those who have tested positive.
All students and staff are being offered tests to keep any potential spread of the infection under control.
Great Baddow High School, Chelmsford
On Thursday, September 10, Great Baddow High School in Chelmsford confirmed that one of their pupils had received a positive diagnosis for Covid-19.
Headteacher Mr Paul Farmer said that it was a Year 13 pupil who had tested positive, and the school was working with Public Health England.
He said students had made a “settled, mature and calm return to school” and praised “the effort and commitment of our staff.”
St John Payne Catholic School, Chelmsford
On Thursday, September 17 St John Payne confirmed its first case of the virus.
The school said that a year 12 pupil had tested positive for coronavirus.
As a precaution, the school sent home any students who had been within close proximity to the infected sixth form student.
In a letter, headteacher Mr Coen said: “We have received confirmation of our first case of Covid-19 within the student body. The student is in Year 12.
“Aside from being diagnosed and displaying symptoms, they are otherwise well and able to continue with school work.
“A number of students already confirmed as having been in close proximity (within 1 m) with the student will be sent home.”
Ravens Academy, Clacton-on-Sea
On Wednesday, September 16, Ravens Academy in Clacton announced that two members of their ‘childcare setting community’ had tested positive for Covid-19.
They released a letter to reassure that most people who have the virus, it will only be a mild illness.
“The small number of children who have been in direct prolonged contact with the individuals who have tested positive for COVID-19 have been contacted directly and will be staying at home for 14 days,” it read.
“For all other pupils, the setting remains open and your child should continue to attend if they are well.”
Sweyne Park School, Rayleigh
On Tuesday, September 8, a member of staff at Sweyne Park School was confirmed positive for the virus.
Staff and pupils who came into close contact with the affected person were sent home.
A deep clean of all necessary areas within the school took place on September 8 and the school remained open to all pupils and staff members who weren’t been affected by the incident.
Thorpedene Primary School, Southend
On Monday, September, 14, all year one pupils at Thorpedene Primary School were sent home after a child tested positive for Covid-19.
Parents of year one pupils were sent a text in the morning asking them to collect their child immediately.
Only the year one ‘bubble’ was sent home.
There are a number of other schools which are thought to have had confirmed cases of Covid-19 but we are awaiting confirmation.