by ALEXANDRA RETTER
Goodview Elementary School, Winona Middle School, and Lewiston-Altura Secondary School were included this week on the Minnesota Department of Health’s (MDH) list of Minnesota schools with COVID-19 outbreaks. These outbreaks are defined by MDH as five or more cases over a two-week period among students and staff who were infectious while at school.
Lewiston-Altura School District Superintendent Gwen Carman said there have been more cases among students and staff recently, with some of the cases being grouped and some being isolated. Lewiston-Altura had six cases among students and staff at the high school level this week and two last week. Since school began, there have been 17 cases at the high school level. “The most recent cases have been predominantly associated with the high school building,” she said.
This week, the district expanded its mask requirement to include all seventh through 12th graders, she said.
Districtwide, Winona Area Public Schools (WAPS) had six new cases among students and staff this week as of Wednesday and five last week. Since school began, there have been 30 cases.
At WAPS, the cases were spread out over the two-week period, COVID-19 Coordinator Jackie Henderson said. “It’s definitely nice we don’t see any correlations in classes or lunch waves or work areas,” she said.
Some of the cases have ties to activities outside school, like a community sports team or block party, she said.
WAPS will continue to provide COVID-19 testing options for students and staff, as well as contact tracing in classrooms, lunch rooms, buses and school activities and athletics, Henderson said.