Ahead of the holidays, NOLA Public Schools (NOLA-PS) remains committed to the health and safety of our school community, and we will continue to do everything we can to ensure the District and our schools are supported through the duration of the pandemic.
It's important to note NOLA-PS follows the same COVID-19 related metrics* as the City of New Orleans, as well as information specific to its schools, to make data-driven decisions about its operations.
NOLA-PS continues to monitor key COVID-19 metrics in collaboration with our City Health Department and NOLA-PS Medical Advisors, and we will continue to monitor these data for trends over the coming weeks.
With schools closed for the winter break holiday, NOLA-PS will suspend its weekly updates to the COVID-19 Tracker. The updates will resume on Monday, Jan. 11, 2021 after the start of the next semester.
NOLA-PS will be in close contact with the Louisiana Department of Health and our health advisers during the break as we continue to track the COVID-19 pandemic in New Orleans.
After the winter break holiday, weekly updates will resume each Monday afternoon starting on Jan. 11, 2021 and will be released at 4:00PM.
Visit our COVID Case Tracker dashboard to see the latest data that shows the impact of COVID-19 on our school community.
As of noon on Thursday, December 17, the District is tracking a total of 76 active cases of COVID-19 (22 staff; 54 students) among 39 schools in our school community. Of the 76 cases, 46 were newly confirmed since our last report on Dec. 10, 2020.
The District’s COVID Case Tracker reports active cases over an approximately two-week period. For the purposes of our dashboard, an active case is defined as a COVID-19 case that is confirmed and within their isolation period.
All schools are required to report positive cases to the Louisiana Department of Health (LDH) and the District. The District is continuing to stay on top of updates, collaborate with state and local agencies, and work closely with our school leaders, task force, and community stakeholders to ensure a safe 2020-2021 school year.
The data included in our COVID-19 Tracker reflects self-reported cases from our schools and provides the real-time impact of the pandemic in our school community. The goal is to provide teachers, staff, students and parents with information that can help inform decisions they make for themselves and the NOLA-PS family.
*The citywide metrics tracked include:
● New cases per day above 50 (7-day average)
○ An increase over the 7-day average would need to be part of a trend of results of “community spread” to influence decision-making, not an identified or contained outbreak.)
○ New case demographics may influence more specific alterations to our current school model.
● Positive test rate above 5% (higher test rate would need to be part of a trend)
● Loss of testing capacity for symptomatic individuals with responsible turnaround times
Prior to reverting to full-time distance learning, the District has options it can exercise to help mitigate the number of cases within our school community. They include: restricting extracurricular activities, reducing the number of grades served with in-person learning, and reducing classroom size, transportation capacity, and group maximums.
NOLA-PS will continue to prioritize in-person learning, in coordination with our local and
state medical experts, as it offers a myriad of advantages, according to the CDC:
● Provide safe, supportive learning environments for students.
● Provide critical services that help meet the needs of children and families, especially those who are disadvantaged, through supporting the development of social and emotional skills, creating a safe environment for learning, identifying and addressing neglect and abuse, fulfilling nutritional needs, and facilitating physical activity.
● Reopening schools creates an opportunity to invest in the education, well-being, and the future of one of America’s greatest assets—our children—while taking every precaution to protect students, teachers, staff and all their families.