1,000 Students Isolated as Adelaide School Shut Down Over New COVID-19 Case

November 26, 2020 Updated: November 26, 2020

One thousand students have gone into isolation and an Adelaide high school has closed down after a female student tested positive for COVID-19 on Wednesday.

South Australian Department of Education confirmed that the student had attended while potentially infectious and that the Woodville high school is currently undergoing deep cleaning and while remaining closed for contact tracing until further notice.

Anyone who attended the site on Monday was urged immediately to isolate with all members of their household.

Deputy Chief Public Health Officer Mike Cusack said he believed the case was part of the Parafield cluster, which was sparked after a cleaner and two security staffs contracted the virus from a returned traveller at Peppers medi-hotel, an Adelaide quarantine hotel.

Epoch Times Photo
The Woodville Pizza Bar in Woodville, a COVID-19 hotspot in Adelaide, Australia, on Nov. 18, 2020. (Kelly Barnes/Getty Images)

“We do believe the case is linked to the Parafield cluster and does not represent unknown transmission into the community,” Cusack told ABC radio on Thursday.

Contract tracers had been working overnight to determine the source of the infection, he said.

“The link that we’re looking at, at this stage, is the pizza bar,” he added.

SA Chief Health Officer Nicola Spurrier also believed that the student have contracted the virus at Woodville Pizza Bar, where she picked up a pizza on Nov. 14. Spurrier said the young girl “has done absolutely nothing wrong”, encouraging as many people in Woodville area to get tested as possible.

“It is very important for anybody now in that Woodville area, particularly if you have frequented that pizza bar, go back to our web site and look at the dates where we know there were people infectious and absolutely think do I need to get tested?”, she told The Guardian.

Epoch Times Photo
South Australian Chief Public Health Officer Nicola Spurrier announces restrictions being eased at the Daily COVID-19 update in Adelaide, Australia on Nov. 20, 2020. (Kelly Barnes/Getty Images)

The student’s case would take the Parafield cluster to 30 cases.

One of the security guards had allegedly told contact tracers that he had only purchased food from the Woodville pizza bar, causing authorities to believe that thousands of people could have contracted the virus when picking up food from the pizza shop. It later became clear that he had worked there.

In light of the latest cluster, the SA government resolved to make sweeping reform to the hotel quarantine system where anyone testing positive, including overseas arrivals, will be moved to a dedicated health facility.

Premier Steven Marshall said all security at the school will be provided by police, and staff will not be allowed to work at other high-risk locations, including prisons and aged care centres.

He will also ask national cabinet to consider testing all Australian returning from overseas before they are allowed to board their flights, in addition to a negative test required before any travel permission is given.

“We continue to act swiftly and decisively based on the expert health advice,” the premier said.

“What we must do is put as many shields here between the virus and South Australia.”