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Charles City schools remove face covering requirements at all campuses as absentees decline

By Bob Steenson, [email protected]

Charles City Community Schools have removed the requirement that staff and students wear face coverings in any of the district’s attendance centers, the district announced Thursday, after student illness absentee rates fell below 7% at all campuses.

At one point or another within the last several weeks almost all of the attendance centers had been under a face covering requirement as a mitigation measure against the COVID-19 virus.

“We have good news to share with our school family regarding the current illness rate in the Charles City Community Schools,” the distinct said in an email message and posted on its website.

“Beginning at 3:30 pm, Thursday, February 3, the health mitigation plan will be relaxed at all campuses and face coverings will no longer be required,” it said.

The district’s “Illness Dashboard,” tracks a three-day rolling average of student absenteeism attributed to illness.

As of Thursday evening, it showed absenteeism at 3.8% for the high school  3.9% for the middle school, 4.7% for Washington Elementary and 4.2% for Lincoln Elementary. No figure was listed for the Innovative Campus.

The Floyd County 7-day rolling average of COVID-19 positive test results was at 17.6% on Thursday, with 103 new cases of COVID-19 reported in the last seven days. The 14-day rolling average was 18.2%.

The Iowa governor’s office announced Thursday that it was discontinuing the regular reporting of COVID-19 statistics for Iowa counties and the state.

“The flu and other infectious illnesses are part of our everyday lives, and coronavirus can be managed similarly,” said Gov. Kim Reynolds. “State agencies will now manage COVID-19 as part of normal daily business, and reallocate resources that have been solely dedicated to the response effort to serve other important needs for Iowans.”

Reynolds said she was also signing the final extension of the state Public Health Disaster Emergency Proclamation Thursday, saying it would expire at 11:59 on Tuesday, Feb. 15.

“The state’s two COVID-19 websites, and, will be decommissioned on February 16, 2022, but information will remain accessible online through other state and federal resources,” the governor’s statement said.



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