D49 El Paso County COVID Data Update Oct. 19, 2020
OVERVIEWKey measures of population health are now worse than the early, intense wave of cases, and are worse than the July surge in case rates. El Paso County is measuring a steady increase in infections and transmissions through September and into October. Because schools operate downstream from the community, worsening conditions out there are disruptive to learning in our schools and classrooms. We have had multiple closures and quarantines as a result of community transmission. Although we have managed those disruptions well, and although there has been zero incidence of at-school transmission, we implore our community to stay vigilant and keep modeling the hygiene, distancing, and masking practices that have yielded positive results when practiced at scale and with fidelity.HEALTH DATA
County health data has degraded substantially over the past month, with adverse levels and adverse trends.
elpasocountyhealth.org/ covid19data-dashboardPlease note that El Paso County’s Public Health Department has implemented a major revision to the visualizations and data available on the public dashboard. I will incorporate some of those new visualizations below. On the three key population health measures, this is the status as of Monday morning, October 19, 2020:Key Measure #1: 14-Day Incidence per 100,000 *Lower is better
Rating: VERY HIGH Level with Adverse Trend
The Case Rate has surged from 114 last Monday to 179 today. We remain in the “Very High” range (>100). The new dashboard configuration has re-labeled the levels using the the Colorado Dial Framework, so as of this morning we are in Level 2 (Concern) of Safer at Home.It is significant that our case rate has been increasing for a month and has returned to the very high band that we last measured in August. That level is very concerning, and the recent levels make us more vulnerable to rapidly rising case rates. In past weeks I showed the visualization calibrated to 14 days. For this update, I am showing the entire history of the pandemic so you can see how our current level and trend compares to previous surges.The degrading health trends in El Paso County have clearly accelerated, which does not support increasing our attendance percentage at this time. We will continue tracking this measure daily. Given the current levels and trends it is responsible to enter and exit fall break at the 50% attendance level for MS and HS students.Key Measure #2: Daily PCR Test Positivity (14-Day Average) *Lower is better
Rating: Good Level with Adverse Trend
The test positivity rate is at 4.93% today, barely under the public health target (maximum) of 5%. We want that number lower, so being under 5% is good, but it is a matter of significant concern that the positive rating has been steadily increasing over the last month, matching the rise in case rates. The average turnaround time for test is stable at 2.12 days. Due to logistics realities for collection, transfer to lab, and lab processes, any average turnaround under two days is near optimal.Key Measure #3: Community Health Agency Capacity
Rating: Good Level with Concerning Trend
This measure is a composite of hospitalization and death rates, which reveal the intensity of infectious spread and resulting illness. Over the last 14 days, EPC has tracked 60 hospitalizations and 1 death, numbers, that while concerning and tragic, are within the county’s current health capacity to care and support. The county still reports this as a good level, but the trend is increasing in the wrong direction.
D49 Community Update October 2020 & Survey
D49 Community Update from Chief Education Officer Peter Hilts, October 2020
Dear D49 Family, We are coming up on fall break! School year 2020-21 is well underway, and we thank you for working so hard as we wrap up our first quarter and continue our gradual return to in-person learning. We will maintain our current, full population model for elementary students, and our 50-50 hybrid for middle and high school students through fall break and for at least two weeks after we resume on October 26.
We invite you to join us for a message from D49 Chief Education Officer Peter Hilts, and take a brief survey to share what you think about our effectiveness as we continue school year 20-21 and our gradual return to in-person learning. You’ll find the link in this post, in your in-box and online at D49.org.
Thank you for your hard work, and your honest feedback.
Have a great fall break!
Survey link: http://bit.ly/49Voices_RTL
Please keep students home if they don’t feel well
Dear D49 Families,
We want to share a friendly reminder that sending learners to school requires at-home health screening every day.
Along with the excitement of reuniting and getting to know each other in our return to in-person learning, we are already experiencing the challenges of illness in our classrooms. As we are seeing, even minor symptoms can have significant ripple effects to our return to in-person learning. Guidance from our partners at El Paso County Public Health supports our nursing staff as they assess children showing COVID-like symptoms at school, and also informs their appropriate response, which in some cases requires sending home cohorts of learners and school staff.
Parents can help! Please keep students home if they don’t feel well, or are experiencing symptoms in the following checklists:
Symptoms Observed or Reported:
1 or more MAJOR SYMPTOMS
- Feeling feverish, having chills or temp of 100.4F or greater
- New or unexplained persistent cough
- New or unexplained shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Loss of sense of taste or smell
2 or more MINOR SYMPTOMS
- Sore throat
- Runny nose or congestion
- Muscle or body aches
- Nausea, vomiting
EMERGENCY COVID-19 WARNING SIGNS include: trouble breathing, persistent pain or pressure in the chest, new confusion, inability to wake or stay awake, bluish lips or face. Seek medical attention immediately by calling 911.
Students should stay home if they are experiencing:
1 or more major symptoms and/or 2 or more minor symptoms indicated on the table above.
This, and more useful information may be found on the D49 Nursing Services webpage. We encourage all of our families to become familiar with this process. Paired with our system of safety protocols, following these steps will give D49 our best chance at making this school year the safe and memorable one we know it can be.
Thank you for your time, understanding, and enduring trust.
D49 El Paso County COVID Data Update Oct. 12, 2020
D49 El Paso County COVID Data Update Oct. 5, 2020
D49 El Paso County COVID Data Update Sept. 28, 2020
Video: D49 CEO Return to Learn Update, 9/25/20
D49 El Paso County COVID Data Update Sept. 21, 2020
D49 El Paso County COVID Data Update Sept. 14, 2020
District 49 will begin the 20-21 school year
Suspending Volunteer Service
Return to Learn: August 17 Start
Public Health Recommendation: July 23
Back to School Update: July 2
Lunch Update: Holiday and Final Day: June 26
Return to School Plan & Survey: July 10
Family Attendance for Outdoor Graduation Ceremonies: June 7, 2020
Chromebook Returns: June 2 & 4: May 29, 2020
On March 30, 2020, District 49 re-opened for learning under the new conditions of operations required by the coronavirus health emergency. For the time being, D49 will pursue excellence as E49, which acknowledges our move as a district to an E-learning and E-working model! Thank you for walking with us as we navigate our new landscape and season of learning created by this epidemic.
Our primary concern is protecting learning time while respecting the needs of families and students during this challenging time.
We are also providing equipment to families who need support to participate in E-learning.
Specific class information is avaible on your school's webpage.