Why were local schools listed as ‘unreported’ on Alabama’s K-12 COVID-19 dashboard?


DOTHAN, Ala. (WDHN) — Last Friday, the Alabama K-12 COVID-19 dashboard went live, showing the number of cases reported in a school system on a weekly basis.

Some school systems around the state showed no data on that dashboard, and Houston County Schools was one of the systems that was listed as unreported.

“It was not required last week,” Houston County Schools Superintendent David Sewell said. “I spoke to our lead nurse who will be doing it, and it was not required last week. She’s working on it this week. … It will be required this coming up week.”

Sewell said that they’re not trying to hide anything, and they’re following guidelines to keep their students and staff safe.

“We’re washing hands, we’re social distancing, we’re wearing masks, and we’re quarantining,” Sewell said.

Dale County Schools is another system that was unreported last week. However, their superintendent said they have been posting numbers on their school site and social media.

“We wanted to be very transparent,” Dale County Schools Superintendent Ben Baker said. “We didn’t want people to think we’re hiding anything because you know we’re all in this together so what we do is when we have a positive case, we put it on our website, and I also post it to social media.”

The Alabama State Department of Education Communications Director Michael Sibley said that one reason for some systems being unreported is because it’s a new system.

However, every week moving forward school systems are required to post their numbers.

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