– Story by Patti Mertz / Mike Patterson

A day after B.C. had its highest ever number of new COVID-19 cases, we have exceeded it by almost 50 percent.

In the Thursday update, Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry reported 274 new cases.

Henry indicated the province may have to find new ways to stop people from gathering in superspreader events, such as putting criteria in applications for a marriage license.

Meanwhile, parents of children at a school in Port Alberni have been alerted to a COVID-19 exposure.

Island Health says the exposure happened at Wood Elementary school on October 19th.

School District 70 sent a letter to parents saying that someone at the school has tested positive for COVID-19. It has not been revealed whether it’s a child, a teacher, or another member of the staff.

Island Health has done contact tracing to identify any staff and students that need to self-isolate or self-monitor for symptoms. Parents with children that have been exposed will be contacted individually.

Over in Kelowna, health workers are trying to contain an outbreak of COVID-19 at a school.

Dr. Henry says five members of the school community have tested positive for COVID-19 so far. About 160 members of the school community are being told to self-isolate for 14 days and monitor for symptoms.

Dozens of schools in the province have now reported exposures, but this is the first outbreak.