NORFOLK, Va. — Author's note: The above video is on file from September 6, 2021.
School is officially back in session, and parents and guardians in Hampton Roads can track COVID-19 transmission levels at their local schools in order to make plans and stay updated on ways to protect their children and their families.
Children are not immune from contracting COVID-19, and the complications can still be serious in certain cases: medical professionals at local hospitals, such as CHKD, cite an increase in pediatric hospitalizations within recent months.
According to the Virginia Department of Health, an outbreak of COVID-19 is classified as more than two cases "where persons are linked by a common exposure to an ill person, setting, event, and time period."
The VDH also specifies that transmission must occur within a school facility or a school-sponsored event in order to be categorized as a school-associated outbreak.
While children ages 12 to 17 are eligible to receive the vaccine, it has not yet been approved for distribution in children under 12.
Masks continue to be required for all K-12 students regardless of vaccination status per state law, and schools will implement and encourage practices to discourage any spread, such as social distancing and handwashing.
Major school districts across Hampton Roads have created transmission and case number dashboards that are publicly available and updated either weekly or every weekday.
These dashboards break down important numbers, including case numbers at specific school buildings.
Here are some dashboards where you can keep track of what's going on in your child's school and district at large. Click on them to learn more:
School divisions for Gloucester County, Mathews County and Poquoson refer to the state COVID-19 dashboard for community transmission levels.