In the last 14 days, 179 Arkansas school districts have reported 50 or more COVID-19 infections per 100,000 district residents, according to the Arkansas Center for Health Improvement. This accounts for more than half of the public school districts statewide.
Every week, the ACHI reports the numbers of COVID-19 infections per 10,000 district residents for the previous two weeks. Since the previous report, 26 school districts have been added to the list, while 153 remained from the last report.
These school districts with 50 or more COVID-19 cases per 10,000 resident are considered by ACHI to be in the “red zone.” There have been an increased number of districts with 100 or more cases per 10,000 residents, and these are classified as being in the “purple zone.”
There were 34 school districts that were in the purple zone this week – a new record. These school districts include Brinkley, Brookland, Centerpoint, Clarendon, Cutter-Morning Star, Danville, Dardanelle, Des Arc, Dover, Gentry, Glen Rose, Guy-Perkins, Hector, Kirby, McCrory, Melbourne, Mt. Vernon-Enola, Nemo Vista, Pangburn, Paris, Pea Ridge, Poyen, Prairie Grove, Quitman, Russellville, Salem, Scranton, Siloam Springs, South Conway County, Trumann, Vilonia, Waldron, West Fork, and Wonderview.
“We are fighting a battle against COVID-19 that too many are losing,” said ACHI president and CEO Dr. Joe Thompson said in a statement. “While we have two highly effective and safe COVID-19 vaccines that are being distributed over the course of the next several months, the call to action remains this: Take the day-to-day precautions of washing your hands, staying at least 6 feet away from people who are not members of your household, and wearing a mask in public. Keep these up even after you get vaccinated. This is how we fight this threat and return to normal.”