CATHOLIC Education Office Sandhurst has welcomed Bendigo Health's decision to dedicate some COVID-19 testing times to two Bendigo primary schools.
Between 10am and 1pm on Thursday and Friday, only people presenting from St Joseph's Primary School or Holy Rosary Primary School will be permitted testing through the drive-through clinic at the La Trobe Rural Health School car park.
Catholic Education Office Sandhurst director Paul Desmond said it was a very good move.
"Anything that we can do to help all people is a positive, but nobody wants children standing at the back of the queue," he said.
Mr Desmond confirmed there were no new coronavirus cases at St Joseph's, Holy Rosary or Catherine McAuley College.
The Department of Health and Human Services reported on Tuesday that the cluster at St Joseph's had grown to 16 people.
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Mr Desmond said there were still only 11 students and three teachers at the school who have tested positive to COVID-19.
He said the department informed him the two additional cases could be other people who were connected to the school.
Mr Desmond said all of the positive COVID-19 cases were doing well.
"I have spoken to each of the three principals who informed me that the children who have tested positive are showing remarkable resilience and fortunately are not exhibiting signs of ill-effects of the virus," he said.
"The three staff members at St Joseph's are in regular contact with Principal Joan Coldwell and she tells me that they too are in good spirits, are focused on the children, and are doing well."
Mr Desmond said there was greater support for families at St Joseph's who had been struggling to obtain the federal government's $1500 pandemic disaster leave payment.
"In my conversations with Principal Joan Coldwell, I am told there has been confusion but things are now becoming clearer," he said. "Those families who required the necessary support are now receiving it."
Bendigo Health's drive-through COVID-19 testing clinic will open only to presentations from two Bendigo primary schools on Thursday and Friday mornings this week.
Between 10am and 1pm, only people presenting from St Joseph's Primary School or Holy Rosary Primary School will be permitted testing through the drive-through clinic at the La Trobe Rural Health School car park.
This clinic is accessible through the Anne Caudle Centre at 100 Barnard Street.
During these times, the general public can access the walk-in screening clinic in the old emergency department on Stewart Street.
Children under five can only be tested at the walk-in clinic.
Catholic Education Sandhurst reported no new cases of coronavirus at either St Joseph's or Holy Rosary as of Thursday morning.
As of Wednesday, there were two cases linked to Holy Rosary and 16 linked to St Joseph's.
Bendigo Health's screening clinics are open from 10am to 5.30pm every day.
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