Distance learning will resume for the students of Cannon Falls Area School on January 4, 2021. The COVID-19 advisory committee made the decision to switch from hybrid learning to full-time distance learning in late November 2020. The committee will reevaluate the COVID situation in the school district and surrounding areas and decide whether to maintain a full-time distance learning model for second semester, switch to the old hybrid model, or switch to a possible new hybrid model proposed to students and parents by Principal Hodges on December 18. As of now, Cannon Falls will return to a hybrid schedule starting on January 11.
The week of December 19 to December 28 2020 had one staff member and twelve students identified as close contacts of a person who had tested positive for COVID-19 at Cannon Falls Area Schools. There have been a total of 12 staff and 21 students who have tested positive for COVID since September 8, 2020.
As of December 31, 2020, there were 291 active cases of COVID-19 in Goodhue County. 26 of those cases were hospitalized at that time. In total, there have been 42 COVID deaths and 3,036 confirmed positive COVID cases and 33 probable cases. 33 cases total have been admitted to the ICU (intensive care unit).
According to the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH), phase 1a of the COVID-19 vaccine distribution has already begun. Phase 1a allows people who are working in healthcare settings with high risk to receive the vaccine first. Phase 1b is the phase following phase 1a. This will allow frontline essential workers and seniors aged 75 and older to receive the vaccine. Phase 1c will allow seniors aged 65-74, high-risk people aged 16-74, and other essential workers to get the vaccine following phases 1a and 1b. Phases 1b and 1c have not started yet, as the MDH is not sure when there will be enough doses of the vaccine to start these phases. As more doses become valuable, the vaccine distribution will move from phase 1 to phase 2. In phase 2, groups that would be included in phase 1 as well as adults within communities that have been extra affected by COVID. Following phase 2, phase 3 will allow any providers to give the vaccine and anyone who wishes to receive it will get the vaccine. This will be when there are plenty of doses available to distribute.
The MDH has also confirmed that there have been a total of 405,686 confirmed positive cases of COVID-19 in Minnesota. There have also been 14,858 probable cases obtained from antibody tests. On January 2 alone, there were 2,534 newly confirmed cases and 180 new probable cases. There were 53 newly reported deaths on January 2 from COVID. There have been a total of 5,430 deaths from COVID.
According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), in the United States, as of January 2, 2021 there have been 20,061,818 total confirmed cases of COVID-19 since January 21, 2020. On the week of December 26, 2020 to January 2, 2021. On that same week, there were 17,333 deaths from COVID. In total, since January 21, 2020, there have been 346,925 deaths from COVID-19.