Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) announced updated quarantine guidance on Dec. 7, 2020. This guidance is on Close Contacts and Tracing. We are working to update other areas of the website, documents, and other materials as quickly as possible.
These updates are based on Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance that shortens quarantine in certain situations. CDC: Options to Reduce Quarantine for Contacts of Persons with SARS-CoV-2 Infection Using Symptom Monitoring and Diagnostic Testing
School Data and Decision-making
How school districts and charter schools should use county-based data in their decision-making
Minnesota's Safe Learning Plan is a data-driven, localized approach that prioritizes in-person learning, particularly for our youngest students. In-person school, along with engagement in extracurricular activities, are important for the health and wellbeing of students and families. This data- and information-driven approach means that school districts and charter schools within the same county and in different counties may decide to implement different learning models depending on their unique assessments of their data and information.
How data is used
The county-level data presented in Data for K-12 Schools: 14-day COVID-19 Case Rate by County (PDF) is to be used by school districts and charter schools to make decisions about their safe learning models. The county-level data is provided to assist school districts and charter schools but is not intended to be the sole basis for their decision-making. This data should be used in combination with additional data points and information about local school communities and school buildings.
What data shows
The data included in the document shows, by county of residence, the number of people whose COVID-19 test results were positive during the 14-day period covered by this document, per 10,000 people living in the county. Positive test results are included if a person was tested during the 14-day period. Positive test results are included for both polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing and antigen testing. County population is based on the U.S. Census Bureau American Community Survey from the 2018 five-year estimates.
What else is included in decision-making
In addition to the county-level data, when making decisions about their learning models, school districts and charter schools also need to take into account the number of confirmed positive cases, the number of people needing to quarantine, and the level of influenza or COVID-like illness in the school community and each school building. It is also important for school districts and charter schools to assess information about the conditions in their school community and school buildings, including implementation of health best practices in instructional settings (such as mask wearing and appropriate spacing of students), instructional preparedness (such as staffing sufficiency or cohorted classrooms), facility and transportation capacity, and engagement and communications with local stakeholders.