SIOUX CITY -- The good trend of fewer novel coronavirus cases in the Sioux City School District continued, with a second consecutive week in which only one new positive case was reported.
Additionally, there are much fewer district students lately out of buildings in precautionary quarantine.
The first two weeks following the resumption of classes after the holiday break had the same result, as only one person tested positive for coronavirus as 2021 began. That makes for the clearest weeks since reporting on the virus began in early September.
The district is continuing the Friday practice of releasing the number of positive cases determined within the district over each week. The newest recap of positive cases showed only one employee and no students tested positive, which the exact same breakdown of the prior week ended Jan. 8.
Virus positive tests are also dropping in the metro and surrounding Siouxland counties.
As of Friday, the number of positive cases in Woodbury County was above 12,900. There have been 175 deaths from COVID-19 in Woodbury County, a number that remained unchanged from Thursday.
There was only one new death related to COVID-19 reported in any Siouxland county Friday. That was in Dickinson County, Iowa, which rose to 26 deaths since the pandemic began in early 2020. There have been four deaths in Dickinson County over the last three days, for something of an uptick.
The pandemic impact trend in the Sioux City district lessened in December. The Dec. 18 report, the last report prior to the break, showed four students and six employees tested positive, while the numbers the prior week had 12 students testing positive.
One other statistical recap showed the number of students, out of a pupil population of just under 15,000, who were out of buildings while quarantining due to the virus. The most recent number was for Tuesday, when 240 students were absent via quarantine, while a prior amount was 265 the first week of January.
There were 505 students absent via quarantine on Dec. 22 and 406 on Dec. 15. Those totals can vary greatly from day to day, as pupils begin or end quarantines of roughly 10 days.
The release noted that for each positive case reported, contact tracing is done in conjunction with Siouxland District Health Department. Individuals who test positive, as well as any individuals identified as close contacts, are directed to self-isolate or self-quarantine and take other appropriate measures in accordance with state and public health guidance.
Classes have been in a hybrid version of learning for the first two weeks of January, in a decision made by the Sioux City School Board on Dec. 14 to lessen any impact of pupils and staff from mingling with friends and family over the break. That setup ended Thursday, while Friday was a day of no school, due to snowy conditions.
From early October to December, more than two dozen class sections have converted from in-person to virtual learning for two weeks, as higher virus numbers showed up in varying schools.