COVID-19 cases falling as district changes mitigation strategies


Ayaana Pradhan

The number of COVID-19 cases has increased, but the overall average positivity rate and new cases per one hundred thousand people has decreased.

Sarah Holzman, Headlines reporter

The updated COVID-19 dashboard, located on the Indian Prairie School District 204 website, reads that there have been four confirmed cases of COVID-19 during the week leading up to Feb. 7. This number is two people more than the two confirmed cases during the week leading up to Jan. 31. Compared to Neuqua Valley, which had three confirmed cases, and Waubonsie Valley, which had one, Metea Valley had the highest number of cases.

The transmission level was high, with an average positivity rate at 5.81 percent and new cases per one hundred thousand people resting at 326.19 as of Feb. 7. These numbers are less than those of Jan. 31. The positivity rate was 7.27 percent, and new cases per one hundred thousand people were 478.62.

There is no longer an option to eat lunch in the locker banks or auditorium hallway, only in the commons. This reduction is partly due to the overall decrease in cases since the end of the first semester. 

“We planned on having it [the lunchroom change] at the start of the second semester,” assistant principal Daniel Debruycker said. “Then when we came back [to school from winter break] the omicron variant, and the numbers were still high.”

Because of the spread of the Omicron variant of COVID-19, administrators decided that relocating students to the commons and library would not be beneficial. Students are not able to bring food to the library, which only gives them the opportunity to eat in the commons.

“At that point in time [during the surge of the Omicron Variant], we did not feel like it was the right thing to do,” Debruycker said. “As those [the number of cases] dropped, and some other things: staffing, cleanliness of the building, that type of thing, just different variables to make that decision.”

District 204 has had an estimated total of 1,374 COVID-19 cases since Aug. 16. Metea accounts for 103 of these. 

“I appreciate everyone’s patience as we continue to navigate through this time of life. We appreciate our Mustangs working with us and hope to have a wonderful last three and a half months,” Debruycker said.