SIOUX CITY -- The highest weekly number of positive novel coronavirus cases of the year has been reported in the Sioux City School District, as a combined 34 students and staff members were cited as having the virus.
The number of students who tested positive was 19, while the number of employees was 15 over the week of Nov. 16-20. That follows the week in which 21 employees and 11 pupils tested positive, so the past two weeks have marked the top weeks of the fall semester for the virus.
The district is continuing the Friday practice of releasing the number of positive cases determined within the district over each week. Over two months more than 20 class sections have converted from in-person to virtual learning, although none took that move this week.
Four classrooms in three Sioux City School District buildings and all West Middle School pupils moved to online learning instruction last week, as the novel coronavirus pandemic continues to grow in the tri-state area.
That step was taken after the Iowa Department of Education approved the district’s waiver request to move West Middle School to virtual learning. No other Northwest Iowa school districts requested the state agency to approve a move to online instruction over this week.
Cases have climbed sharply the last two months in Woodbury County. As of mid-afternoon Friday, the number of positive positive cases in the county moved above 9,600, after 127 cases were added over the last 24 hours.
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.
District workers continue taking steps such as extensive cleaning and sanitizing places that are heavily used in buildings.
The Nov. 6 recap of positive cases showed five employees and eight pupils tested positive, and the two class sections that moved online were at West Middle School.
For the week ended Oct. 30 included 11 pupils and eight employees, and the totals for the week ended Oct 23 included eight pupils and six employees.
The number of people testing positive for the virus for the week ended Oct. 16 included three pupils and nine employees, The totals were six students and six employees testing positive through the Oct. 9 week.
On Oct. 2, the district reported 16 employees and 10 pupils had tested positive, when several courses moved online. For the week ending Sept. 25, 17 workers tested positive, as did 15 students, while four students and four employees tested positive for the week ended Sept. 18, and five pupils and seven staffers tested positive in the second week through Sept. 11.
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