Over 1,000 local K-12 students got COVID last week

Students at Eastmont elementary in Dayton wait to board the bus at the end of the first day of school on Wednesday Aug. 18, 2021. MARSHALL GORBY\STAFF
Caption
Students at Eastmont elementary in Dayton wait to board the bus at the end of the first day of school on Wednesday Aug. 18, 2021. MARSHALL GORBY\STAFF

Reporting to Ohio Department of Health shows school cases far higher than last year

The Dayton-area’s K-12 schools reported that 1,011 of their students had new cases of COVID-19 in the week of Aug. 30 to Sept. 5, according to data released Thursday by the Ohio Department of Health.

That’s significantly higher than any week last school year, even in the surge of COVID cases surrounding the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays, when 250-350 new school cases were common.

ExploreTeen vaccination rate varies dramatically by community

Among Ohio’s 607 school districts, Xenia, Northmont and Beavercreek schools ranked seventh, ninth and 11th in the state for having the most new student COVID cases last week. Kettering, Centerville and Miamisburg schools also ranked in the top 20.

But it was not an isolated issue in a few schools. More than 30 local districts, private schools and charter schools reported at least 10 new COVID cases last week between students and staff. (see chart below).

Centerville, Franklin, Northmont and Dayton reported the most new COVID cases among school staff, with 8-9 each.

ExploreLast schools begin after Labor Day; others back from closure

Public health officials said their advice to schools remains fairly simple.

“Everyone who is able to get vaccinated, should get vaccinated — students, faculty, staff, parents,” said Dan Suffoletto, spokesman for Public Health Dayton & Montgomery County. “And everyone should be wearing a mask indoors at all times whether you’re vaccinated or not. Those are the two basic strategies.”

PHDMC leaders Jeffrey Cooper and Dr. Michael Dohn expressed significant concern last month just as schools were opening, because the COVID-19 delta variant is both more contagious than the original coronavirus strain and affects school-age children more significantly.

Suffoletto said Friday that Public Health is not considering any recommendation for schools to move back online at this time. Both health and education officials have said the value of in-person classes is hard to overstate.

ExploreMore than 3,000 Ohioans currently hospitalized with COVID

At this time last year, the entire state of Ohio was reporting about 1,000 new COVID cases per day, and many schools were still in fully remote learning. In the Dayton region, only 19 student COVID cases were reported to ODH from Sept. 7-13, 2020. This year, the state has recently seen 5,000 to 7,000 new cases per day, just after schools started in-person.

Since an August surge of COVID cases and quarantines disrupted the back-to-school process, many schools have recently changed their policies, adopting mask mandates, and in some cases, have closed for multiple days or a week in an attempt to stem the tide of COVID spread.

As of Monday, Troy will be the only one of the area’s 12 largest school districts with no mask mandate. Northmont and Springboro have partial mask mandates (grades PK-6), and the other nine will require masks for everyone (Dayton, Centerville, Kettering, Beavercreek, Huber Heights, Miamisburg, Lebanon, Fairborn and Xenia).

New COVID cases Aug. 30 - Sept. 5
school or districtstudent casesstaff cases
Xenia 676
Northmont 648
Beavercreek 597
Kettering 521
Centerville 519
Miamisburg 494
Dayton 478
Fairborn 466
Tipp City373
Huber Heights 346
Trotwood-Madison 342
Carlisle 331
Franklin 329
Tecumseh 292
Lebanon 290
Bellbrook-Sugarcreek 262
Troy 260
West Carrollton 255
New Lebanon 244
Springboro240
Northridge 171
Vandalia-Butler 140
Carroll HS140
Cedar Cliff 131
Milton-Union 123
Greene County Vocational112
East Dayton Christian101
Dayton Early College Academy100
Warren County Vocational100
Greeneview 94
Horizon Science Academy83
Bethel 82
Twin Valley82
Upper Valley Career Center81
Miami Valley Career Tech81
Eaton71
Dayton Christian 63
Bradford 51
Miami East 42
St Charles Borromeo40
Covington 30
Dayton Leadership Academy30
Dayton Islamic School20
Newton 20
Brookville 20
Oakwood 20
Bishop Leibold East & West20
St Albert The Great20
Archbishop Alter20
Holy Angels20
Legacy Christian Academy13
Summit Academy Xenia11
Incarnation11
Valley View 11
Troy Christian Elementary10
Chaminade-Julienne10
Trotwood Prep & Fitness10
Mother Brunner10
Dayton Regional STEM School10
Our Lady Of Rosary10
Miami Valley Academies10
Summit Academy HS Dayton10
St Peter10
Gloria Dei Montessori10
Middletown Christian10
Greene County ESC01
Bethlehem Lutheran01
Montgomery County ESC01
SOURCE: Ohio Department of Health