China locks down school full of children after single Covid case

Anxious parents received information about their children only after midnight

Sravasti Dasgupta
Wednesday 03 November 2021 12:29
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File: Mass testing at Shanghai Disneyland

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China’s government officials locked down a primary school in Beijing with dozens of students inside, after a teacher tested positive for Covid-19.

Anxious parents of the children, reportedly between the ages of seven and twelve, gathered outside late Monday, when the positive case was discovered and the school went into lockdown.

The parents received information about their children only a little after midnight, when the principal emerged to inform them that some of the children would have to be quarantined, reported Bloomberg.

It is unclear exactly how many students were subsequently quarantined. The BBC, quoting a report by the New Tang Dynasty Television outlet, said 35 children were quarantined.

The principal also said the quarantine period for the children would be for two weeks, adding that only one parent could stay with each child for the quarantine period.

Parents whose children were still awaiting Covid-19 results were asked to bring pillows and quilts to spend the night at the school.

The school’s entire staff and students were tested inside the premises, which have been shut temporarily.

The infected teacher’s child also tested positive at a nearby junior high school because of which some of the school’s students had to quarantined as well, said the Bloomberg report.

Another 16 schools in the Chaoyang district of Beijing also had to be shut because the teachers had received Covid-19 booster shots in the same vaccination site as the infected teacher.

China has been implementing stringent Covid-19 containment measures in line with its zero-Covid policy, ahead of the Winter Olympics that are scheduled for February next year. The measures include snap lockdowns, travel restrictions and mass testing.

The country is one of the only ones in the world to apply such strict measures to achieve zero Covid cases, something fresh breakouts have so far thwarted.

Earlier on Sunday, thousands of visitors inside Shanghai Disneyland were locked down so authorities could carry out mass testing.

Nine new infections were recorded in Beijing on Wednesday, the largest one-day increase in the national capital since 19 January.

The country has reported 93 total new local infections, the highest since 9 August, when the country had its last major Covid-19 outbreak, reported Reuters.

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