Some NB parents are frustrated with the change in school contact tracing policy – New Brunswick | The Canadian News

Some New Brunswick parents are frustrated and confused by the contact tracing process in the province’s schools.

Erin Ellis, a mother of two school-age children in Moncton, said she did not receive a call from Public Health until a week after her son tested positive for COVID-19.

She said they only asked about her son’s contacts for two days before he tested positive and received confusing advice on how to follow up.

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On Thursday night, Oromocto, mother of three, Haley Jones, received an email from the principal of her children’s school explaining that, in the future, all students in K-8 schools “should participate in rapid tests. daily when there is a confirmed Covid-19 case at school. Close contacts will not be notified exclusively as they were in the past. “

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This means that if someone in the school system, including a parent, reports a positive result to Public Health, all students will be screened quickly.

No additional context will be provided anymore, such as what grade or class the person is in, or if the person is even a student.

That’s too vague for Jones, and she says parents have resorted to telling each other about positive test results, in turn compromising their children’s privacy.

This has created a whispering network in which parents try to stay informed through unofficial channels.

“I think that’s especially concerning because we haven’t received these contact tracing notifications due to privacy,” he said in a Zoom interview on Friday.

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“Nobody wants their child to be the one to start an outbreak at school. I would worry that my children would be bullied. “

She also expressed concern about relying on being in the right social circles to be notified.

“It seems that if you are not aware of your school community, you just do not get to know.”

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In a statement released to Global News by the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development on Friday afternoon, the province clarified that “contact tracing efforts are no longer focused on individual classes, as was previously the case with grades K-8. . This change will help to manage the risk of transmission in the school community, particularly for age groups that do not have high levels of vaccination ”.

However, contact tracing will continue in the secondary schools.

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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