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Local area schools see spike in COVID cases, statewide hospitalizations remain low

Local schools in Tompkins and Cayuga counties are seeing a spike in positive COVID-19 cases, but statewide hospitalizations remain low as state health officials continue to monitor the highly transmissible BA.2 variant.

Central New York’s COVID positivity rate is higher than anywhere else in the state, according to The Citizen. Central NY’s current positivity rate is 9.14%- quadruple the statewide positivity rate of 2.36%. Still, statewide hospitalizations are at their lowest point since August 2021, according to Governor Kathy Hochul’s weekly COVID update.

As reported last week, Moravia Central School District in Cayuga County is seeing the highest level of COVID cases compared to any other district in the county, with 121 cases reported district-wide as of Tuesday, March 22.

Related: Moravia school district recommends ‘additional mitigation strategies’ amid rise in COVID-19 cases

The Trumansburg Central School District has seen an increase in COVID cases, announced Superintendent Kimberly Bell last week. As of Thursday, March 25, there were 53 positive cases among students and staff. The district attributes the spread to showings of the high school musical “Emma” on the previous weekend, where performers and attendees were allowed to be unmasked, according to Ithaca Voice.

In response to the uptick in cases, both Moravia and Trumansburg school districts recommend additional mitigation strategies, such as encouraging the wearing of masks and social distancing. Trumansburg has imposed enhanced infection control precautions, increased availability of hand sanitizer in school facilities, and has begun cleaning high-traffic surfaces more frequently.