Health and Safety Weekly Update
Week of Monday, November 2nd - Friday, November 6th
Hello South Brunswick,
As I am sure you have been following, COVID cases are rising dramatically in the state and country. This has reached South Brunswick in the way of multiple cases hitting the High School causing us to close the High School until Thanksgiving. This obviously impacts are reopening plans as the High School will not open for hybrid in-person learning on Monday as scheduled.
While the High School was impacted by multiple cases, at this time, the K-8 schools were not impacted and are all still scheduled to open for in-person hybrid instruction on Monday, November 16th. I will caution you to be ready to pivot as the cases rise (today over 3,800 state-wide), things could change and directives from government could be issued that close schools or some other form of impact. The second wave appears to be upon us. Health and safety must remain our #1 priority.
While the state numbers have reached April-like counts, South Brunswick continues to remain significantly off our peak numbers from that time. For example, during the peak months of COVID from the Spring, South Brunswick documented an average over 75 cases a week. We all have to remain diligent and cognizant that our actions have an impact on others, as well as ourselves, and if these numbers begin to spike in South Brunswick, we may not have any option to open our doors. I do not share this to scare, but rather to speak plainly about our current reality.
The district will continue to keep you informed and to further help with that we are making a change to our communication about specific COVID related cases. Beginning this week, there will be no more than one communication in a given day that summarizes any district positive cases from the day prior. This communication will summarize the district and tell any information about positive cases that we are able to share from that day (we hope there is nothing to share). Information will be divided by school, so it will be easy to follow. We hope this will help with misinformation being spread and causing undue anxiety. Our goal remains to keep you informed and of course to keep all safe and healthy.
(Latest Published Results)
Yellow - Moderate
Number of cases (last 7 days) in South Brunswick
Number of school aged cases (last 7 days) in South Brunswick
SOUTH BRUNSWICK SCHOOL DISTRICT HAPPENINGS
Number of Students and Staff in Buildings (Daily Average)
Number of students/staff sent home during the day with symptoms
Number of COVID confirmed cases reported to the schools
1 student/1 staff
(As a result of the proper protocols being followed, there was no contact with anyone in the schools.)
Athletics Reporting Over a 6 day period (HS & MS)
Athletics Reporting (Daily Average)
280 athletes/22 coaches (daily average)
Number of athletes/coaches sent home during the day with symptoms
1 athlete/ 0 coaches
(cough and/or shortness of breath)
Number of athletes not able to follow health and safety directions
STATE (most current reporting)
State Transmission Rate (most current reported)
Regional Positivity Rate (Central East)
Regional Case Rate (Central East)/100,000 residents
Statewide School Outbreaks/Middlesex County
(the State uses the term "outbreak" when a minimum of
two cases independent of each other are in a school)
36 statewide/1 outbreak/3 linked cases in Middlesex County
What guidance exists at this time:
- The CDC recently modified their definition of a close contact. New definition is now “A person who spent 15 minutes or more within a 24-hour period and was within 6 feet of a person who is infected with COVID-19. Exposure must happen while the infected person is infectious (2 days before onset to 10 days after)”
- Connecticut, Pennsylvania, and Delaware meet the criteria for New Jersey's travel advisory. Non-essential travel to and from these states is highly discouraged.
- COVID Alert NJ is NJ's free and secure mobile app that anonymously alerts users if they have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive.
- For information and considerations for events and gatherings for holiday celebrations and safety, follow the link to the CDC holiday page: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/holidays.html
- Free Drive-Thru Flu Shot Clinics - In order to help keep its residents safe and continue to practice social distancing, Middlesex County Office of Health Services will be offering drive-thru flu clinics beginning Wednesday, October 28th. This is a free service being offered to all Middlesex County residents ages 6 months and up that meet a set of criteria. To learn more about how to get your free Flu Shot, upcoming clinic dates, and tips on how to fight the flu this year, residents can visit: http://www.middlesexcountynj.gov/flu
- Resumption of indoor sports.
- Indoor dining allowed 25% capacity, Capacity limits still in place.
- Food and alcohol will not be permitted to be served inside establishments after 10:00 p.m. but restaurants can continue outdoor service past 10:00 p.m.
- Fall athletics in operation, all mask and social distancing requirements still in effect
- Interstate indoor youth sports events, up to and including high school age athletes, are banned because of an increase in transmission seen amount youth sports.
Other local district progress with cases and quarantine
- Hackensack Public Schools operating remotely and will remain closed to in-person instruction until further notice due to the high positivity rate of infection in the city of Hackensack. All Athletics and extracurricular activities are also suspended until further notice.
- Clifton School District transitioning to fully remote learning beginning November 9th.
- Howell High School will be virtual for two weeks after multiple community members tested positive.
- Wayne School District - students will begin a full week of virtual learning November 9th as the K-12 district comes to grips with more potential cases of COVID-19 than its contact tracers can handle.