Children attending all seven of Conwy’s secondary schools and over half of the county’s primary schools have tested positive for COVID, despite schools being closed over the Christmas break.

The figures, which came from Test, Trace, Protect Wales, were accurate as of January 9 but are likely far higher than those reported, due to not everyone testing or logging results.

Cabinet member for education Cllr Julie Fallon updated councillors at yesterday afternoon’s (Tuesday) cabinet meeting, revealing 317 pupils were known to have COVID in Conwy last week alone.

Cllr Fallon said figures had gone up in England where children had returned earlier after the winter break and expected a similar situation in Wales.

“Schools only went back yesterday, so it’s still a little bit early to see the impact that Omicron will have there, but it is positive to report that certainly we currently only have one nursery class in one school that we’ve had to close due to COVID and insufficient staff due to COVID,” said Cllr Fallon

“In terms of numbers within our schools, as things looked on January 9, we had 317 positive learners isolating. That equates to 29 of our 52 primary schools and all seven of our secondary schools having at least one case of COVID. But as I say, it’s quite early days at the minute, and so we’ll see what happens over the next week or two, but hopefully the trend will follow the rest of the country, but the schools went back in England last week, as ours have only returned yesterday. I think there will be a little bit of an increase (of COVID cases) over the next week or two within schools.”

Conwy’s leader Cllr Charlie McCoubrey explained the situation in terms of COVID numbers across the county.

“As of today, it is 2,274 cases per 100,000. It is worth noting that is a drop from during the peak of around 2,500 two or three days ago,” he said.

“I think that is something that looks to be mirroring the UK (figures), but one thing we’ve all learned through this pandemic is the sheer unpredictability of this virus and the case numbers.”