Hundreds of schools not contributing to Kentucky COVID-19 dashboard

Hundreds of schools not contributing to Kentucky COVID-19 dashboard

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - An online tool Kentucky leaders hoped would help make students safer has been available since last month, but those in power expressed frustration about it this week.

Kentucky Lt. Gov. Jacqueline Coleman said the problem is that hundreds of schools have yet to contribute any information to that state K-12 COVID dashboard.

Coleman made her concerns clear at a COVID-19 briefing Tuesday.

“That is unacceptable and it’s irresponsible,” she said. “It jeopardizes the health of your students, your school staff, their families, and your community. We all want our children back in their classrooms, where they can learn with their teachers and be with their friends.”

Coleman said Tuesday that more than 200 schools had yet to provide any information to the dashboard. It was made public two weeks ago.

In our coverage area, WAVE 3 News found a number of schools were not keeping up on a daily or weekly basis, but could only identify one Wednesday that hadn’t contributed any data at all - Fort Knox Dependent Schools.

Public statistics could not be found on the district’s website either.

The district is listed on the dashboard. Private schools, not directly overseen by the Kentucky Department of Education, have provided case information on the tool.

A spokesperson for Fort Knox Schools, in response to our question of why they haven’t uploaded information, said it is “a federally operated school system and a Department of Defense (DoD) field activity. In accordance with DoD guidance and policy, we report all data to the Department of Defense.”

In that same request for information, WAVE 3 News asked for a current case count of the district or if another public tool to view infection numbers and quarantined students, staff, and others was available.

The spokesperson provided a link to overall Department of Defense COVID-19 totals, which is broken down by branches of the military and departments but doesn’t detail what specifically is happening at Fort Knox Dependent Schools or in the state of Kentucky.

Speaking generally about all districts, Coleman emphasized Tuesday that information about schools is critical to our future.

“It helps keep Kentucky open for business, and on a path to a sustained return to in-person classes, which is what we all want," she said.

Coleman added most schools are doing a good job of keeping the public informed.

Copyright 2020 WAVE 3 News. All rights reserved.

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