Wimbledon College Parents Are Relaxed About Coronavirus Threat

School to remain closed until Tuesday after a deep clean has been carried out

Wimbledon College

Wimbledon College

Parents in Wimbledon remain relaxed about the threat of coronavirus despite one school closing following a confirmed case.


On Monday (March 2) Wimbledon College closed for 10 days after a teacher at the school was diagnosed with Covid-19 after a trip to Italy.


The school said it was a precautionary measure and that a deep clean would be carried out before reopening on Tuesday (March 10).


Parents picking up their children from Ursaline Prep School in The Downs, which backs onto Wimbledon College, said they were not concerned about the virus.


Zayd Mahfooth, a pharmacist, said there is more chance of winning the lottery than catching the virus.


His daughters, aged seven and 10, said they are being told to wash their hands regularly at school.


Zayd said: “We can’t avoid it, it’s not helpful to be scared. What they’re doing which is very good is slowing it down – it’s a small problem at the moment. You’ve got more chance of winning the lottery than catching it.”


Another mum at the school gates said she did not think there should be any unnecessary school closures.


Olga Ceccheti who as picking up her seven-year-old daughter said she feels “quite chilled” at the moment.


She said: “I am not that worried, it’s quite a small risk. I think there’s more fuss than is needed.”


One mother picking up her daughter told us that as long as schools were following the advice of Public Health England she would keep sending her to school. “I’m not worried at all,” she added.


On its website Ursaline High School, also in The Downs, said it contacted Public Health England which graded the risk to Ursaline students and staff as “low”.


Merton Council’s director of public health also sought to allay concerns. Dagmar Zeuner said: “I’d like to reassure people that the risk to the general public remains low and Merton Council is working with health colleagues to do everything we can to stop the virus spreading and ensure the people of Merton are protected.


“If you have not been contacted by Public Health England as a close contact of the confirmed case you do not need to take any action at this time.”


Public Health England advises frequent hand washing and to call NHS 111 if you suspect you have the virus.


By Tara O’Connor, Local Democracy Reporter

March 8, 2020