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.
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 district||student cases||staff cases|
|Huber Heights ||34||6|
|West Carrollton ||25||5|
|New Lebanon ||24||4|
|Cedar Cliff ||13||1|
|Greene County Vocational||11||2|
|East Dayton Christian||10||1|
|Dayton Early College Academy||10||0|
|Warren County Vocational||10||0|
|Horizon Science Academy||8||3|
|Upper Valley Career Center||8||1|
|Miami Valley Career Tech||8||1|
|Dayton Christian ||6||3|
|Miami East ||4||2|
|St Charles Borromeo||4||0|
|Dayton Leadership Academy||3||0|
|Dayton Islamic School||2||0|
|Bishop Leibold East & West||2||0|
|St Albert The Great||2||0|
|Legacy Christian Academy||1||3|
|Summit Academy Xenia||1||1|
|Valley View ||1||1|
|Troy Christian Elementary||1||0|
|Trotwood Prep & Fitness||1||0|
|Dayton Regional STEM School||1||0|
|Our Lady Of Rosary||1||0|
|Miami Valley Academies||1||0|
|Summit Academy HS Dayton||1||0|
|Gloria Dei Montessori||1||0|
|Greene County ESC||0||1|
|Montgomery County ESC||0||1|
SOURCE: Ohio Department of Health