Coronavirus cases confirmed at 360+ schools across South Florida

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – More than 360 primary and secondary schools in South Florida have had confirmed COVID-19 cases among students or staff since early September.

Those numbers are reflected in the state’s latest report on coronavirus in schools, which was released Wednesday and can be seen in its entirety at the bottom of this page.

The latest data includes cases confirmed through Oct. 17. The cumulative totals include cases dating back to Sept. 6, which is earlier than many South Florida students returned to the classroom.

In total, 144 primary and secondary schools in Miami-Dade County have had confirmed cases, 102 schools in Broward, 106 in Palm Beach County and nine in Monroe.

Volunteer Jennifer Smith, left, escorts first grader Zachary Etienne to a classroom on the first day of school at Fox Trail Elementary School, Friday, Oct. 9, 2020, in Davie, Fla. Broward County, Florida schools phased reopening for face-to-face eLearning. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee) (Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved)

The Broward County schools with the most total cases since Sept. 6 are Calvary Christian Academy in Fort Lauderdale (11 total cases; 8 cases last week), Hochberg Preparatory in Hallandale Beach (9 total cases; 1 last week) and Chaminade-Madonna College Prep in Hollywood (6 total cases; none last week).

In Miami-Dade, Divine Savior Lutheran Academy in Doral has had the most confirmed cases (11 total; 4 last week), followed by Florida Christian in Miami (7 total cases; 2 last week), Mesivta Greater Miami in Miami Beach (6 total; none last week) and Saint Kevin Catholic School in Miami (6 total; 3 last week).

These reports have been criticized as incomplete, as they only include cases confirmed by the state, not all that have been reported locally. Local educators have said that parents are notified of cases at their children’s schools before cases are certified by the state.

On Tuesday, Gov. Ron DeSantis said school closures due to COVID-19 “should be off the table” and that closing classrooms does students more harm than good.

About 60% of students in Florida have returned to school in person, amounting to about 1.8 million children and teenagers, the state says.

Doctors have advised parents to “stay vigilant” when it comes to keeping their children healthy as they return to school.

View and download the state’s latest report on COVID-19 in schools below:

(If you cannot see the chart above, click here.)

Local 10 News reporter Hatzel Vela contributed to this report.

About the Authors:

In January 2017, Hatzel Vela became the first local television journalist in the country to move to Cuba and cover the island from the inside. During his time living and working in Cuba, he covered some of the most significant stories in a post-Fidel Castro Cuba.