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The mask mandates are not delivering the wanted results as Arkansas Covid-19 cases in students reaches new record high



Arkansas – The mask mandate in schools was one of hottest topic in the last month and a half in Arkansas as parents were urging the state officials to allow mask mandates in schools at the start of the new school year.

The state officials remained deaf to their requests, but following a judge ruling to block the law that was blocking school districts to mandate mask in schools, majority of the districts decided to implement the mask mandate for students, teachers and staff.

However, as the time passes it seems that mask mandate in schools didn’t deliver the wanted results since the number of positive students across the state reaches record high number.

According to the latest data, a record 59 Arkansas public school districts with COVID-19 infection rates of 100 or more new known infections per 10,000 district residents over a 14-day period. The previous high was 54 during the week of Jan. 11.

Furthermore, 189 school districts now recorded 50 or more new known Covid-19 infections per 10,000 district residents over a 14-day period. This is increase of one more since last week.

“We continue to see more communities exceed 1% of their population newly infected with COVID-19. These numbers reflect the risk in the communities from which students, teachers, and staff come each day,” ACHI President and CEO Dr. Joe Thompson said in a statement. “

We must do more to protect our children from the delta variant. Everyone who is still unprotected should get vaccinated as soon as possible, bearing in mind that people who are too young for vaccines are relying on the rest of us to keep them safe. I also urge schools boards that have rejected mask requirements to rethink that position, and I urge parents to support their local school boards.”

The number shown in the total data is confirmed and probable cases combined. Probable cases are those who tested positive with antigen tests and verbal reporting of cases. Arkansas Department of Health revealed the latest data and these are the five top school districts with the most active Covid-19 cases as of September 9.

  • Cabot: 130 active cases, 397 cumulative
  • Fort Smith: 90 active cases, 367 cumulative
  • Springdale: 84 active cases, 485 cumulative
  • Bentonville: 73 active cases, 361 cumulative
  • Jonesboro: 73 active cases, 204 cumulative

According to the Friday’s report issued by ADH, Arkansas added 2,159 new cases and 30 additional deaths. The number of active cases increased by 28 now reaching 19,742 cases. A total of 1,149 people are hospitalized which is 45 less compared to Thursday. The number of people on ventilators grew by 1 now reaching 316.