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Indiana Releases Color Coded COVID-19 County Map to Help Schools

The new tiers and colors are meant to guide how school systems operate based on county infections.

Posted: Aug 26, 2020 9:42 PM
Updated: Sep 2, 2020 12:47 PM

Indiana is simplifying the threat.

County-by-county, new COVID-19 color coding will share how quickly the virus is spreading.

The new approach is meant to be a guide for school systems through out the fall.

Matthew Longest has his daughter Kiara in the school system, so he's glad that the state will be sharing a clearer set of information.

"I think it's a good idea, because it allows parents to be able to see what's going on, where we're at as far as the schools, so I think it's a really good system," Longest shared.

The new tiers will mark the severity of community infections: blue for the lowest level of positive cases, then escalating up through yellow, orange, and red based on several factors.

Each color is linked to recommendations for school operations.

But, a red color doesn't mean the state is asking for a complete shutdown of the school systems.

"All school systems are asked to make every effort to keep one school building open, even during high community spread. So that we can assist those students who need remote learning, who need to be ensured of a safe environment, and to provide food security," said Dr. Kristina Box, Indiana's Department of Health Commissioner. "The best way to get counties into blue, and to keep them there, is for every Hoosier to make the choice to protect others."

Still, despite the new effort to quickly and clearly share how each county is doing when it comes to infection rates, Matthew Longest says he's still hoping for a more granular approach when it comes to sharing information with parents.

He noted that a single student can impact more than the classroom or school:

"I'm worried because you get kids that come in. Some of them don't feel good, you can't really necessarily say that it's what it is. That one kid can infect a whole classroom, infect the teacher. And if that teacher goes to different places, they can infect more and more people. I think that even with the mask, even with the things, there is the chance still that it could spread."

The state is also using the system as a guide to direct more health resources to where they're needed most.

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