Exmouth Deaf Academy closes after pupils and staff test positive for coronavirus

The Exmouth Deaf Academy has closed its doors and moved its teaching online after four students and three staff tested positive for Covid-19.

The academy said it had been informed of a confirmed case of the coronavirus among its staff and pupils over the weekend, and immediately closed the school and college as a precaution.

A total of three staff and four students have been confirmed as having Covid-19, and a number of adults and children are also self-isolating as part of measures to control the virus.

The academy said no date has been set for reopening the site.

Sylvan Dewing, Deaf Academy principal, said: “We are working closely with parents to ensure the temporary closure does not have an impact on teaching.

“We established a successful online academy during lockdown which is in place and has resumed.

“As ever, education and student and staff wellbeing remain our utmost priority.

“We will continue to be in communication with our parents as we receive the latest updates from Public Health England.”

The academy liaised with Public Health England and school governors on learning of the initial positive Covid test.

Its day pupils, and the residential students, will now be taught online while the academy is closed.

The academy said the current situation was ‘fluid’, saying ‘we do not have a confirmed date for the campus to reopen’.

A Deaf Academy statement said: “Over the weekend we were informed of a confirmed case of Covid-19 within our teaching and learning community. In consultation with Public Health England (PHE) and the chair of the governing body, we made the immediate decision to close the academy building as a precautionary measure.

“The current position is that four students and three members of staff from the Deaf Academy have tested positive for Covid-19.

“The academy, in Douglas Avenue, Exmouth, which has 48 day and residential students, has continued to keep the campus closed and teaching has moved to our online academy.

“In accordance with PHE protocols, a number of staff and students have been required to self-isolate.

“This situation is fluid and, as yet, we do not have a confirmed date for the campus to reopen”.

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