In the second month of reporting, Camden County Schools’ COVID-19 numbers for students and employees who are quarantined or positive have decreased and remained steady throughout October.
Throughout the month, there was an average of 21 students or staff in quarantine each week, with a high of 37 in mid-october to a low of 11 the week before. An average of eight students or staff tested positive each week. On average, 9.75 tested positive each week in September.
The number of quarantines is significantly lower than September — with a weekly quarantine average of 96 — when the system was required to count students and employees who were quarantined after a non-school related exposure.
“The new reporting guidelines only reflect students or employees quarantined and isolated due to exposure to a person with a confirmed positive COVID-19 at school,” the school system said in a release on its website. “The new guidelines may help explain the steep decrease in the number of quarantined students and employees in the month of October.”
Camden didn’t not have any clusters of cases in September or October. And several schools once again had zero positive cases during October, including David L. Rainer, Mary Lee Clark, St. Marys Middle, Sugarmill and Woodbine.
“While the news of this decline in COVID-19 positive cases is encouraging, continued vigilance on the part of our students, staff, faculty and community are necessary to continue this trend,” according to the release. “Especially during the upcoming holiday season, the use of face coverings, social distancing, hand washing hygiene, and other safety measures are vitally important to reduce the spread of COVID-19.”
Overall, COVID-19 cases have been trending downward across Camden County after the surge this summer. Camden has had some small, mostly single-day spikes since then. Camden hit an average of 3.14 new daily cases on Oct. 23, the lowest average since June, but numbers began climbing the next day and the daily average is sitting at 7.71 now, according to the Coastal Health District.
Camden’s percent positive has been below the recommended 5% all but one week — 7.7% Oct. 2 — since the end of September. It was 3.7% on Oct. 23, then rose to 10.8% the next week.
Camden has a total of 1,465 cases since March with 18 deaths, as of Nov. 3, which is an increase of 45 cases in a week.
The health department continues to offer free COVID-19 testing to anyone regardless of symptoms. Testing is available by appointment every Tuesday in St. Marys. To make an appointment, call (912) 230-9744 or visit covid19.dph.ga.gov.