A CULLINGWORTH secondary school is the latest in the Bradford district to be hit by COVID-19, after two of its staff members tested positive for the virus.

In an email sent out to parents by headteacher Mrs Katharine Needham, Parkside School confirmed that two members of staff had contracted coronavirus, and that the school will now undergo a partial closure.

A "number of staff" have also been asked to self-isolate.

Year eight, nine and 10 students at Parkside School have been asked to stay at home from tomorrow until Tuesday 22 September.

Year seven, 11, 12 and 13 pupils have been asked to come to school as normal.

Those in year 11 will also have to remain on school grounds during lunch time, the school says.

In her email, Mrs Needham said that Parkside School hopes to re-open to all year groups on Wednesday 23 September, should all be well, adding that it may open to year eight students earlier than this, if possible.

The email reads: "Unfortunately, we have been informed that there has been a positive COVID-19 test from two members of our staff.

"As you may know from the national track and trace programme, people are being asked to self-isolate for 14 days if they are a contact of a person who has tested positive.

"As a result, we have a number of staff who have been asked to self-isolate.

"As a school, we need to have sufficient staffing to keep students safe and therefore I have had no choice but to make the decision to undertake a partial closure for some year groups.

"On Monday 14 September to Tuesday 22 September, Y7, Y11, Y12 and Y13 should come to school as normal.

"Y8, nine and ten will need to stay at home.

"All being well, we will re-open to all year groups on Wednesday 23 September."

The school also said it was "confident" that no students or parents will have to self-isolate, despite the positive cases.

"Due to the staggered way in which students returned last week, we are confident that no students meet the 'contact' characteristics.

"Therefore, neither they nor you [parents] need to self-isolate or take a test.

"However, can I ask you please to remain vigilant to the symptoms of COVID-19 and should they arise it is essential that you then contact school, do not send your child in if they are due in and also arrange a COVID-19 test."

A parent of one student who goes to the school, who wished to remain anonymous, said: "I think the poor teachers and kids have had to go back to school too early, and that has put all of their lives at risk.

"When you look at how many COVID cases have come to light in schools recently, it's madness.

"I think they should all be closed again, until after October half-term, at the least."

Parkside School is the latest place to be hit by the virus, after primary schools, secondary schools and sixth forms across the district reported cases since the start of the new term this month.

It comes after students returned to schools and sixth forms to begin the new school year, after months out of the classroom.

A year 12 student at Dixons Sixth Form Academy tested positive for COVID-19, and a "very small number" of students who were in close contact with them are now self-isolating, it was reported yesterday.

Two cases among staff members were also confirmed at Copthorne Primary School in Great Horton, while a bubble at Lapage Primary School in Barkerend will begin remote learning from tomorrow, after the school confirmed a positive case of the virus on Friday afternoon. 

Beckfoot Oakbank School in Keighley also saw a staff member test positive for the virus, causing three members of staff to self-isolate, while Dixons City Academy in West Bowling was also hit by a number of cases during the week.