Schools across Alberta report COVID-19 cases as school year starts

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At least 20 Alberta schools have reported cases of COVID-19 since students across the province started returning to classrooms a week ago.

Support Our Students Alberta, a non-partisan, non-profit public education advocacy group, has a COVID-19 tracker for kindergarten to Grade 12 schools on its website.

It suggests 22 schools have had cases — including seven in Calgary and four in Edmonton — based on recent letters and emails sent to parents.

Alberta Health Services says it is compiling a list of schools with confirmed cases.

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None of the schools have declared outbreaks and all remain open.

Opposition NDP education critic Sarah Hoffman says there are at least 20 COVID-19 cases in schools, with 16 of those infections reported since Friday.

“These are just the ones we are aware of,” she said during a news conference Tuesday. “This is a very disturbing trend just days into the school year.”

Hoffman said the United Conservative government needs to take the number of cases in schools seriously.

“We knew kids would be back in schools for months and the government has done nothing to plan for it,” she said.

Hoffman said the province needs to bring in daily online reporting of COVID-19 cases in schools and provide more resources to schools to keep students safe.

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