Almost 600 cohorts dismissed this school year due to COVID-19

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The Windsor-Essex County Health Unit is worried about an increased number of school cohorts being dismissed in the area due to COVID-19.

Since the start of the school year in Sept, the health unit says over 600 cohorts have been dismissed.

Acting Medical Officer of Health Dr. Shanker Nesathurai says that works out to about 12,000 students.

"12,000 young people have been inconvenienced and have been affected by COVID exposures and those 12,000 young people are doing their part to break the chain of transmission," says Dr. Nesathurai. "Those 12,000 young people and their families have had their lives disrupted so that we could prevent the chain of transmission."

Health unit CEO Nicole Dupuis says it's more than we've ever seen as it relates to exposures, calling it both concerning and significant.

"Our goal and our focus is to keep children in school and to help to limit exposures that takes the community and as we said, some of these activities and social gatherings outside of school, that's resulting in a high number of students being dismissed, that are missing days of learning," says Dupuis.   

There are currently eight schools dealing with COVID-19 outbreaks in Windsor-Essex.

The health unit says 21 cases are within five schools.

The total number of cases is still pending for the other three schools.