The Jefferson City School District has updated their coronavirus policies for the upcoming summer school session and the 2021-2022 school year.
After assessing updated guidance from local, state, and federal healthcare & education entities, the district has made the following changes:
- Students will leave their primary classroom to receive Art, Music, and Library instruction but will remain in their cohort groups, and the classroom and equipment will be sanitized between classes;
- Some schools will begin allowing students to eat meals in the cafeteria again, within their small groups and while maintaining appropriate social distance to minimize exposure;
- Non-essential furniture and seating can be moved back into the classroom as long as social distancing can be maintained. This does not apply to rugs or couches;
- Schools will no longer monitor thermal cameras at building entrances or scan temperatures in car lines. However, the cameras will stay in place, and building staff will still be notified if a temperature above 100.4 is detected;
- Masks will not be required when students are outside for recess. Students are still encouraged to maintain social distancing, especially while outdoors without masks, and will play in designated zones within their classroom cohort;
- A virtual education option will not be offered directly by JC Schools for summer school. The virtual education application window for the 2021-2022 school year will open in August;
Changes will be effective beginning June 7, however the current COVID-19 plan will remain in effect through the rest of the school year.
The Columbia/Boone County Department of Public Health and Human Services is reporting two new coronavirus deaths. This is the 90th and 91st coronavirus-related death since the first COVID-19 death in March of last year and 23rd this year.
The health department is reporting five new COVID-19 cases.
There are currently 56 active cases in the county.
The county now has a reported total number of COVID-19 cases of 18,408.
The county has reported the total number of cases removed from isolation is 18,261.
The Columbia/Boone County Department of Public Health and Human Services dashboard has reported the latest five-day average as nine.
The health department is reporting the total number of hospitalizations in Boone County is 19.
The health department is reporting one Boone County resident is in the hospital due to the coronavirus.
The dashboard is showing six COVID-19 patients in the ICU and two patients on a ventilator.
The hospital status remains in ‘Green’ status. ‘Green’ status is when hospitals are operating within licensed bed capacity; accepting patient transfers from referring hospitals within standard care operating procedures.
The State of Missouri coronavirus vaccine dashboard is reporting that 82,026 residents have received their first dose in Boone County and 70,714 Boone County residents have completed their vaccine doses.
Boone County has the largest percentage of people in Mid-Missouri that have received at least one dose of the vaccine with 45.5%. The second closest in the state is St. Louis County with 41.9%.
Boone County is first in the state with a reported 39.2% of residents that have completed their coronavirus vaccine doses. Atchison County is second in the state with 35.4% of residents have completed the doses for vaccination.
Cole County has the second-highest first vaccination rate in Mid-Missouri with 36.7%. Montgomery County is third with 33%.
Columbia city manager to rescind Declaration of Emergency May 29
Columbia City Manager John Glascock signed a rescission of the declaration of emergency in Columbia Friday to lift the declaration effective May 29.
“Our citizens and businesses have worked diligently to follow safety and health guidelines throughout the pandemic. Residents have also shown the desire to take personal responsibility to protect the health of each other moving forward,” Glascock said.
The City has been under the declaration since March 16, 2020.
The declaration has allowed Glascock to help protect the health and well-being of the community through city wide actions.
The decision to lift the declaration comes after local health leaders announced the City would no longer be under a health order last Wednesday.
“With guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on mask-wearing and social distancing changing for those who have been vaccinated and the rate of cases in our community remaining low, now is the time to begin the process of returning to a sense of normalcy,” Glascock said.
Columbia Public Schools offering more coronavirus vaccinations clinics to students 12 and up
Columbia Public Schools continues to partner with the Columbia/Boone County Health Department to offer free COVID-19 vaccinations to students 12 and up.
CPS is adding two more clinics to help vaccinate students.
Officials say the optional clinics will be hosted at the student’s school. The student will need to complete a consent/permission slip and return it to the school prior to the clinic or bring it to the clinic.
Students are not required to receive the vaccine.
The Pfizer vaccine is the only vaccine currently authorized for those individuals 12 years old or older and requires two doses. Each school has designated dates for both the first and second doses of the Pfizer vaccine.
Wastewater monitoring project shows multiple coronavirus variants across Missouri
Wastewater monitoring is now showing multiple coronavirus variants in sewage samples throughout Missouri.
The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) continues to partner with the Missouri Department of Natural Resources, the University of Missouri – Columbia, wastewater operators, and others to monitor COVID-19 trends.
In prior reports, testing showed the B.1.1.7 (UK) variant virus was present in sewage samples in some locations throughout the state.
In the latest report, testing shows the B.1.1.7 (UK) variant is present in all areas tested across the state.
Other coronavirus variants showing up in the testing include B1.427/B.1.429 (South California), Brazil, and South African; however, these mutations have tended not to be as consistently present as the UK variant. Even though these mutations are present, viral load levels remain relatively stable.
“In some communities, we are consistently detecting the same mutation week after week, serving as a signal of the presence of these correlating variant(s) in the population. In other communities, results are inconsistent between weeks,” said Jeff Wenzel, Bureau Chief of Environmental Epidemiology. “Several reasons could cause this to happen. One possibility is travelers or visitors passing through could be contributing to variation, or person(s) cease shedding after recovery from the infection.”
Despite uncertainties, these results are useful for informing public health investigations and response for stopping the spread of COVID-19.
St. Louis city, county remove mask requirements
St. Louis and St. Louis County are the latest urban areas in Missouri to drop mask requirements, a day after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said vaccinated people could go largely unmasked.
St. Louis County dropped its mask and social distancing requirements but recommended masks when the wearer is close to unvaccinated people. The city implemented a new order Friday that removes all coronavirus requirements and instead directs individuals and organizations to follow CDC guidance.
Kansas City dropped its mask mandate earlier in the day on Friday. Mandates in Columbia and Boone County were allowed to expire on Wednesday.
New coronavirus cases are staying at relatively low levels statewide while the number of Missourians vaccinated continues to creep higher. The state is reporting fewer than 300 new cases per day over the last seven days. About 39% of Missourians had received at least one dose of coronavirus vaccine as of Thursday, according to official figures.
Younger age groups continue to lag behind people 55 and older. About 34% of Missourians age 25-34 have started vaccination, compared to 75.9% of residents between 65 and 74.
KC drops indoor mask mandate following new CDC guidance
All restrictions meant to slow the spread of the coronavirus are being rescinded in Kansas City, Missouri, following guidance from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that allows fully vaccinated Americans to stop wearing masks indoors in most settings.
St. Louis and St. Louis County also may be about to further ease restrictions. St. Louis Mayor Tishaura Jones and St. Louis County Executive Sam Page planned an announcement on Friday. Columbia and Boone County dropped their mask mandates and other coronavirus health order rules this week.
The new CDC guidance announced Thursday still calls for wearing masks in crowded indoor settings, but it will help clear the way for reopening workplaces, schools and other venues.
Seven-day positivity rate down to 4.1%
Missouri’s seven-day positivity rate dropped slightly to 4.1% Friday, according to data posted on the state health dashboard.
The Department of Health and Senior Services reported 350 additional confirmed cases of COVID-19, bringing the total to 507,058. There were also 113 new probable cases discovered through antigen testing, putting the total since the beginning of the pandemic at 85,454.
Seven additional Missourians died from the virus. In total, DHSS has recorded 8,855 deaths due to COVID-19.
Vaccinations continue to slow down across the state. The seven-day average number of daily vaccinations fell by more than 2,000 to 16,184 on Friday. This is less than a third of the daily average when vaccinations peaked in early April.
According to the data posted Friday, 39.1% of Missouri’s population has initiated the vaccination process, which is equal to nearly 2.4 million people.
The state is inching closer to having 2 million residents fully vaccinated, currently at 1.97 million, which equates to 32.2% of Missouri’s population.
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