Two Iqaluit residents who recently tested positive for COVID-19 attend Aqsarniit Illiniarvik in Iqaluit, according to the chief public health officer, who released a statement on June 13.

The individuals are part of Cohort B and were in class on June 7 and June 9. They wore masks, as mandated by the school.

While some students will undergo further testing, Dr. Michael Patterson said Iqaluit schools, including Aqsarniit, will remain open this week at stage 3, when students attend in-person on alternating days.

“I know this is a very uncertain time for parents, students, and staff, and I understand your worries. However, as we learn to live with COVID-19, we need to ensure a balance between lockdown and moving forward in our new normal based on the latest evidence available,” he Patterson said.

Swabs for classmates and contacts of the two infected individuals will be taken on June 14. Based on positive results, if any, a school opening plan for Tuesday will be devised accordingly. In the meantime, students in Cohort A will return to classes on Monday.

“Pfizer vaccine clinics for Nunavummiut aged 12-17 start next week, and I encourage allparents and guardians to book appointments or bring their teenagers to the walk-in here in Iqaluit,” Patterson said. “The COVID-19 vaccines are a game-changer and will be our way out of outbreaks moving forward. Do your part and get vaccinated.”

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