New guidelines released to monitor COVID-19 cases in Marion County schools

Posted at 2:31 PM, Jan 07, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-07 16:33:04-05

INDIANAPOLIS — Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett and county health officials released a new system to monitor COVID-19 cases in schools.

The new color-coded system evaluates a school's positivity rate to determine the health department's response, instead of an overall approach for all schools.

"Parents can expect greater clarity and a measure of relief around this difficult issue in 2021," Hogsett said.

Under the new system, the response from the Marion County Public Health Department will be determined by the risk zone a school is in based on its positivity rate.

You can view more information on the zones and corresponding responses from the health department below.

School positivity risk zones
Responses from the Marion County Public Health Department

Dr. Virginia Caine, director of the county health department, provided an example of how positivity rates will be calculated. You can view the example and more information on the new system in the slides below.

Example of a calculated positivity rate

Caine also announced a new public health order will require schools to report positive cases for staff and students within 24 hours of them learning about the case. They will also need to report if the student or staff member is attending school in-person or virtually.

You can watch the press conference below: