Here’s the latest COVID-19 case rate data for schools

(St. Paul, MN) – The Minnesota Department of Health released a weekly report Thursday that is used by Minnesota schools to determine which learning-delivery method will be used during the pandemic.

The latest data covers the period of Sept 20 to Oct 3.  COVID-19 case rates are determined by the number of infections per 10,000 residents.

Here are MDH’s recommended policy options based on a 14-day case rate range:

  • 0-9 cases per 10,000 residents: In-person learning for all students
  • 10-19 cases per 10,000 residents: In-person learning for elementary students; hybrid learning for secondary students
  • 20-29 cases per 10,000 residents: Hybrid learning for all students
  • 30-49 cases per 10,000 residents: Hybrid learning for elementary students; distance learning for secondary students
  • 50+ cases per 10,000 residents: Distance learning for all students

There are nine Minnesota counties with case rates at 50 or higher, unchanged from last week.  Also unchanged is that Waseca County still has the highest case rate in the state, even with a drop from last week  The current case rate in Waseca County is 159.50, compared to 164.28 last week. Lyon County just arrived in this case rate range this week, after the county’s rate rose from 47.22 to 52.25.  Martin County saw another rise in case rates, from 91.66 last week to 93.17 this week.  Murray County jumped into this category as well, with case rates going from 37.11 to 50.28 within the week.  Other counties with case rates in this range include Chippewa, Kandiyohi, Lac qui Parle.

Twenty-two counties in Minnesota have case rates between 30 and 49, including Blue Earth County, which saw a drop in case rates this week from 35.73 to 29.85.  Other the other hand, Fillmore County saw rising case rates from 17.71 the previous week, to 31.12 on the current report.  Redwood County had a nice drop in case rates, moving from 57.40 last week, to 35.88 this week.  Watonwan County’s case rate also dropped, from 46.48 to 33.72.

There are 33 counties that have case rates between 20 and 29.  One of those is Brown County, where the case rate is 21.02, mostly unchanged from last week. Fairibault (24.47), Jackson (24.88), Mower (22.47), Nicollet (26.64), Renville (29.21), and Sibley (20.12) are all in this case rate range.

Cottonwood, Le Sueur, McLeod, Rice, and Steele Counties are five of 21 counties with case rates between 10 and 19.  Rates rose in all of those counties, except in McLeod, which dropped from 21.77 to 15.07.

Only two counties in Minnesota are maintaining case rates as low as 0 to 9.  Those counties are Cook, in the far northeastern part of the state, and Kittson, in the far northwest part of the state.


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