Primary school will be closed to pupils on Monday for ‘deep clean’ following outbreak of diarrhoea and vomiting

A PRIMARY school will not open to pupils on Monday whilst a “deep clean” is carried out after an outbreak of gastroenteritis.

A spokesperson for the Education Authority (EA) said tonight: “EA is working closely with Portstewart Primary School, the Public Health Agency (PHA) and other statutory agencies following reports relating to a number of cases of gastroenteritis among pupils, staff and family members of pupils at the school.

“As a precautionary measure, in consultation with health and safety representatives in EA, the school will close tomorrow, Monday 30 September 2019, so a deep clean can be undertaken which will allow the school to reopen on Tuesday 1 October 2019.

“The health of pupils, staff and family members of pupils is of upmost importance and the situation will continue to be closely monitored.

“We would advise parents that if their child is unwell on Tuesday or subsequent days they should not come in to school.”

The school’s website said: “Following advice from Education Authority, due to a widespread virus, school will remain closed tomorrow, Monday 30th September, to allow for a Deep Clean to take place. School will reopen as normal on Tuesday 1st October.”

In a message to parents, the school said: ‘RE: Diarrhoea and Vomiting at Portstewart Primary School & Nursery Unit.

‘I write to inform you that the school is currently experiencing an increase in the number of children with symptoms of diarrhoea and vomiting illness.

‘We are working with the Public Health Agency to minimise the risk of spread of the infection within the school.

‘If your child is unwell we request that you do not send your child to school until they have been symptom free for 48 hours. However, please ensure that you contact us and inform us so that we can monitor the situation.

‘If you take your child to see a GP and they request a faecal (stool) sample please show them this letter and ask that they put the following on the form: ‘Norovirus and bacterial pathogen screen – Portstewart Primary School & Nursery Unit’. Please inform the PHA directly on 0300 555 0119 if a sample has been sent from your child.

‘With this letter we are also enclosing a Fact Sheet on gastroenteritis and guide to hand washing that you may find useful. If you are concerned about your child’s health please seek medical advice.

‘If you have any general questions please feel free to call the school office.’


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