Island Health sent out an advisory to parents and staff at Keating Elementary School on Monday after a bat found on the premises tested positive for rabies.
On Wednesday, September 4th, a bat was found near the Out of School care portable and upon examination, tested positive for rabies.
According to the letter, Island Health administered preventative rabies vaccinations to several people who were considered to have had direct contact with the bat.
Authorities believe that children attending the elementary school did not have contact with the bat as it was found after hours in an area that is currently out of bounds and not used during school hours.
They reiterate in the letter that seeing or being near a bat does not constitute direct exposure to rabies, and direct contact means touching a bat with bare hands or being bitten or scratched by one.
Any child or adult who has had direct contact with a bat on the school grounds is asked to contact the Island Health Communicable Disease program immediately at 1-866-665-6626.
Island Health Chief Medical Officer Dee Hoyano also adds that children should be reminded never to interact directly with or disturb wildlife.
“Children should not touch, poke, or pick up a bat. No one should tease or taunt any wildlife by poking it with sticks, nor try to catch it or throw things at it,” reads the letter.
Earlier this year, 21-year-old Nick Major died after contracting rabies after he came into contact with a bat on Vancouver Island in mid-May.