October 29, 2020

After another week at moderate risk for COVID, Brockton could soon look to bring some students back for in-person learning – News – The Enterprise, Brockton, MA

Brockton remains a community at moderate risk for COVID-19 on the state’s risk assessment map — the fourth straight week with that designation, after two weeks at high-risk red.

BROCKTON — For the fourth straight week, the city has been designated as a yellow community at moderate risk for COVID-19, inching the city’s schools closer to a partial return to in-person learning.

The weekly Massachusetts Department of Public Health statistics, released on Wednesday evening, show Brockton had 6.7 coronavirus cases per day per 100,000 residents over the last two weeks. That number is the same as last week’s report.

Brockton remains a community at moderate risk for COVID-19 on the state’s risk assessment map — the fourth straight week with that designation, after two weeks at high-risk red.

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Any community with more than eight cases per day is deemed high risk, while four to eight cases is moderate.

The Brockton Board of Health reported seven new coronavirus cases on Wednesday among residents, bringing the city’s total since the beginning of the outbreak to 4,755 cases. COVID-19 has officially taken the lives of 287 city residents.

Over the last week, 33 city residents tested positive for COVID-19. That is down from 59 positive residents the previous week, which had been the largest single-week increase in cases since 63 residents tested positive between Aug. 12 and Aug. 19, which led to Brockton’s first week as a red, high-risk community.

Brockton also saw the same percent of residents testing positive for the coronavirus, with a 2.52 percent positivity rate each of the last two weeks.

But the positivity rate remains well above the state’s seven-day weighted average of 0.8 percent of tests coming back positive.

Fifteen Massachusetts communities are currently listed as being at high risk for COVID-19, down from 17 in last week’s report.

When Brockton was elevated to a red, high-risk COVID-19 community on Aug. 19, Mayor Robert Sullivan, through an executive order, re-implemented a citywide curfew for residents and visitors between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m., with an exception for essential travel and some essential business. That curfew remains in place.

The Brockton Public Schools Policy Subcommittee meeting decided on Sept. 15 that it would look for three straight weeks of good numbers — including possible weeks at moderate risk, as long as the city wasn’t close to high risk — beginning with the Sept. 16 report to possibly bring back some students for in-person schooling. Brockton has now had two straight weeks in the yellow since setting that policy.

Superintendent Michael Thomas has said he would like to bring back special education students, students with disabilities and high-risk students as soon as it’s safe to do so.

Senior reporter Cody Shepard can be reached by email at cshepard@enterprisenews.com. You can follow him on Twitter at @cshepard_ENT.

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