COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ohio K-12 schools are no longer required to report COVID-19 cases to local health departments as the state updates its reporting policies, which includes moving from a daily update of COVID numbers to a weekly update across the state.
Schools only need to report cases if the school tested a student for the virus and the result is positive, according to the Ohio Department of Health.
“As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to evolve, K-12 schools should continue to work closely with their local health departments to monitor the spread of the virus in their community,” ODH Director Dr. Bruce Vanderhoff said.
ODH said it will archive the COVID-19 School Reporting dashboard.
The update was announced Thursday as the state shifts to weekly COVID reporting instead of daily.
Coronavirus cases, hospitalizations, ICU and vaccination rates will be updated on Thursdays starting on March 17.
The state’s Mask to Stay, Test to Play quarantine and isolation policy will remain in effect. Under the guidelines, students can remain in school and participate in extracurriculars if they are not showing COVID symptoms and wear a mask when appropriate, Vanderhoff said.
“As cases and hospitalizations dramatically decline, we are refining our public reporting processes to be more relevant for this new phase of the pandemic,” Vanderhoff said. “Ohio is one of only a handful of states that is still reporting COVID-19 data daily. Even with this change, the state team will continue to monitor the trajectory of COVID-19 closely. The ODH team has many systems including data analysis and surveillance that will help us monitor COVID-19 activity and identify pockets of higher spread so we can work with local communities to slow the spread of the virus.”