Coronavirus cases confirmed at 675 schools across South Florida

The number of primary and secondary schools with confirmed coronavirus cases across South Florida is approaching 700. (Lynne Sladky, Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – Miami-Dade County is nearing 300 schools that have confirmed coronavirus cases, and Broward County has reached 200 schools that have students or faculty with infections, according to the state’s latest data.

The Florida Department of Health’s weekly report on COVID-19 in primary and secondary schools shows 675 of them with confirmed positive cases across Miami-Dade, Broward, Monroe and Palm Beach counties since early September.

That’s up 41% (from 478) compared to last week.

Miami-Dade has 289 schools listed, up from 210 in last week’s report.

Broward has 200 schools with cases, up from 127 a week ago.

Palm Beach County has 174 schools on the list, up from 129.

Monroe has 12, the same number as a week ago.

The latest data includes cases confirmed through Oct. 31. The cumulative totals include cases dating back to Sept. 6, which is earlier than many South Florida students returned to the classroom.

The state data also does not specify if infected students from those schools have been attending school in person.

Miami-Dade County Public Schools maintains its own dashboard showing cases among those attending in-person learning.

According to the state report, Hollywood Academy of Arts & Science had 11 cases newly confirmed last week, including 10 students — the most among Broward schools. Cypress Bay High School in Weston had 10 cases (nine students and one teacher).

Lubavitch Educational Center in Miami confirmed 10 cases (nine students and a teacher) last week, the most in Miami-Dade according to the state data. Gulliver Prep in Pinecrest had seven cases, including four students.

Broward County Public Schools Superintendent Robert Runcie said last week that he was “very concerned that I see the trends moving in the wrong direction.”

Karla Hernandez-Mats, president of the United Teachers of Dade, said the teachers she represents are also scared, noting that the number of cases confirmed doesn’t account for the hundreds of students and teachers who are forced to quarantine after infections are reported.

These health department reports that come out each Wednesday have been criticized by some 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.

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

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

CLARIFICATION: A previous version of this story did not make clear that the state’s report can include students who are not attending in-person learning.