AUBURN — As new cases of COVID-19 continue to decline across the state, DeKallb County continues to see a 14% positivity rate, the highest in the area.

That high number of cases has hit Hamilton Schools hard as Superintendent Tony Cassel posted on Facebook Wednesday that the school would be moving to e-learning today and Friday because of COVID-19.

Cassel’s message said the school is experiencing a high number of quarantines impacting students and staff.

The school will be returning to in-person learning after fall break on Oct. 25.

Cassel said the school has approximately 25% of its student population out, many of which are quarantined due to contact tracing.

He said that quarantines and COVID-19 have also affected a few staff members.

“This will give us an opportunity to reset and come back strong after break,” Cassel said.

The DeKalb County Health Department has reported 85 cases over the last five days, including 32 today. Over the last two days, the county has reported six cases in school-aged children.

The county continues to be rated in orange on the state color coded map for high spread of the virus.

With that high spread, Dr. Mark Souder, DeKalb County health officer, has chosen not to suggest any restrictions on gathering sizes because numbers of new cases have stayed consistent over several months.

The county has seen an high spread of the virus since the delta variant began its siege on northeast Indiana in late July.

The county has also seen a higher number of deaths in the past week with four reported last week — two of which were residents in their 50s or younger.

Case counts for Wednesday were two in the 0-10 age group, three in the 11-20 age group, four in the 21-30 age group, four in the 31-40 age group, four in the 41-50 age group, eight in the 51-60 age group, five in the 61-70 age group and two in the 71-80 age group.

Souder continues to urge local residents who aren’t vaccinated to get vaccinated.

The health department also urges residents to wear face coverings and stay socially distant when in public settings.

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