Spring Hill USD 230 fared best among local school districts in the number of COVID-19 cases per 1,000 students, according to the Kansas Department of Health and Environment.

Emergency Management Coordinator Mark Whelan’s weekly COVID update Wednesday, Oct. 13, included a school district dashboard KDHE is using to report the frequency of cases in school districts. The data is based on positive cases among students ages 5 through 17 between Sept. 25 and Oct. 8, according to KDHE.

During that reporting period Spring Hill, with a student population of 5,665 (including virtual students), recorded an incident rate of 1.4 cases per 1,000 students, according to KDHE. 

On Oct. 5, KDHE updated the data source for enrollment numbers. Enrollment numbers for each public school district come from the Kansas State Board of Education and represents the unaudited headcount for public districts in the 2020-2021 school year. The unaudited data includes virtual students but does not include Pre-K, 4-year-old at risk, and special education 3- and 4-year-olds in the enrollment numbers. The district's in-person enrollment for 2020-2021 was about 3,300.

Louisburg USD 416 came in next at 3.8 cases per 1,000 students – based on a student population of 1,822.

Paola USD 368, with 1,900 students, had an incident rate of 11.1 cases per 1,000 students.

Osawatomie’s ratio was 15.5 per 1,000 students, based on a student population of 1,029 students, according to KDHE.

Neighboring district Gardner-Edgerton USD 231 had a ratio of 2.5 cases per 1,000 students. The district’s student population is 5,563. To the south, Prairie View USD 362, with a student population of 856, averaged 11.7 cases.

The data does not distinguish if the student contracted COVID-19 in a school setting, a school-related activity or a non-school environment.

Whelan's weekly report to the County Commission also showed Miami County ranks 52nd of 105 counties on KDHE's COVID-19 scale, based on vaccination rates, cases and tests. Whelan said that is an improvement from last week when the county was ranked 59th – with one being the best and 105 the worst.

The county added 68 new cases in the past week, down from 130 new cases the week before, he reported. The county currently has 75 to 80 active cases, according to the Miami County Health Department (MCHD). The county has a positivity test rate of 9.11 percent over the past two weeks, according to KDHE.

The county has three active clusters, all in school settings, according to MCHD.

Whelan reported the county has six new hospitalizations with three admissions to intensive care units.

He said the hospitalizations did not include any pediatric patients.

“That’s always good news,” he said.

On the Kansas side of the Kansas City metro area and northeast region of the state, hospitals reported 18 percent of staffed ICU beds are available, according to the report.

The county did not record any new deaths in the past week, according to MCHD. The death toll stands at 61.

Miami County has recorded a total of 4,244 cases as of Oct. 13, according to KDHE. The report did not include new information on breakthrough cases.

KDHE reports 46 percent of Miami County residents over the age of 12 have completed the vaccination series.

MCHD offers a walk-in vaccination clinic on Mondays.

News Editor Doug Carder can be reached at (913) 294-2311 or doug.carder@miconews.com.

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