St. Joseph County Department of Health sets new guidelines for schools to reopen

NOW: St. Joseph County Department of Health sets new guidelines for schools to reopen

ST. JOSEPH COUNTY, Ind.--- The St. Joseph County Department of Health released new guidelines for schools to reopen this fall on Wednesday. The plan relies on positive COVID case numbers, rather than specific dates, to determine whether or not schools should resume in-person instruction.

"There was an ask from the school districts for the department to provide some recommendations to help guide their decision," said Robin Vida, the Director of  Health Outreach Promotion and Education for the St. Joseph County Department of Health.

The guidelines are based on a three tier, color coded system.

If the county has 28 or more new COVID cases per day, based on a seven day rolling average, it is in the red category. The advised course of action in that stage is to do e-learning or severely limit in-person instruction.

14 to 28 new cases per day puts the county in the yellow category that suggests schools should implement a hybrid model for in-person classes or reduce the capacity of those classes.

The green category symbolizes a downward trajectory in positive cases with less than 14 new cases per day. Schools would be able to fully resume in person classes under this scenario.

The School City of Mishawaka has already decided to go fully virtual from August 12th until at least September 18th because of these new guidelines. 

St. Joseph County Department of Health's guidelines for reopening schools

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