COVID-19 UPDATE: U-46 Returns To In-Person Learning Jan. 4; Pediatric Cases Hit Record Highs; 128,246 Illinois Cases Last Week; Omicron Unleashes Travel Chaos; CDC Could Require Negative Test To End Isolation

COVID-19 UPDATE: U-46 Returns To In-Person Learning Jan. 4; Pediatric Cases Hit Record Highs; 128,246 Illinois Cases Last Week; Omicron Unleashes Travel Chaos; CDC Could Require Negative Test To End Isolation



OVERIEW: U-46 Resumes In-Person Learning Jan. 4; Omicron Unleashes Chaos on Flights; CDC Could Require Negative Test To End Isolation; Pediatric Cases Hit Record Highs

School District U-46, the second-largest school district in Illinois, will resume in-person classes on Tuesday, Jan. 4, according to the U-46 website.

“There is no option for School District U-46 to return to remote learning for all schools,” U-46 Superintendent Tony Sanders said. “That option only exists for districts that have a state-approved e-learning plan (which we do not) or that participate in the state’s competency-based learning pilot.

“As such, should we not have adequate staff to open due to the surge in cases, our only option would be to close all schools and extend the school year, similar to how we handle snow days.

“That said, just like you have seen this past year, individual classrooms may be closed at the directive of a county health department when an outbreak has been declared. If necessary, I can also make the determination to close individual schools or a classroom if the number of cases at a site are cause for concern.

“In those instances, remote learning will occur.  It is always recommended that staff and students take their devices home with them in the event a classroom/school is closed.”

Nation-World Updates

U.S. health officials may again revise guidelines that recently shortened the isolation period for asymptomatic people with COVID-19 to recommend that they test negative for the virus, the White House’s top medical adviser said Sunday.

Omicron is continuing to unleash chaos around the world with more than 4,000 flights cancelled on Sunday, as the variant contributes to a surge in cases and quarantines flight crews. More than 11,200 flights were also delayed, according to tracking website, the Guardian reports.

As millions of students prepared to return to school, new pediatric COVID-19 hospitalizations reached a record high. For the week ending Dec. 28, an average of 378 children were admitted to hospitals every day with COVID-19, according to CDC data.

Mask requirements are returning in some school districts that had dropped them. Some are planning to vastly ramp up virus testing among students and staff. And a small number of school systems are switching to remote learning — for just a short while, educators hope, the Associated Press reports.



OVERVIEW: Omicron Surge ‘Unlike Anything We’ve Seen’; U.S. Children Hospitalized in Record Numbers; At-Home Tests Less Sensitive To Omicron

An unprecedented spike in COVID-19 cases fueled by the fast-moving Omicron variant is crushing hospitals across the United States, with doctors describing packed emergency rooms as health experts implore New Year’s Eve revelers to keep parties small and outdoors to help avert an even worse surge, CNN reports.

More than a year after the vaccine was rolled out, new cases of COVID-19 in the U.S. have soared to their highest level on record at over 265,000 per day on average, a surge driven largely by the highly contagious omicron variant, the Associated Press reports.

The omicron-fueled surge that is sending COVID-19 cases rocketing in the U.S. is putting children in the hospital in record numbers, and experts lament that most of the youngsters are not vaccinated, the Associated Press reports.

U.S. health officials say early data suggests at-home COVID-19 tests may be less sensitive at picking up the Omicron variant, the Associated Press reports.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Thursday advised people against going on cruises regardless of their vaccination status after a recent surge in positive COVID cases onboard ships as the highly contagious Omicron variant sweeps the world, CNBC reports.

Illinois Lt. Gov. Juliana Stratton (D) announced on Thursday that she tested positive for COVID-19 in a breakthrough case of the virus, The Hill reports.


KANE COUNTY: 1,130 New Cases, 3 Additional Deaths; 14.3% Test Positivity

Like the state of Illinois, Kane County recorded its highest number of new cases in a single day — 1,130, according to data posted by the Illinois Department of Public Health.

Sadly, three additional Kane County residents died of COVID-19.

To date, the county has recorded 86,289 positive cases and 948 deaths from the respiratory virus.

Kane County’s seven-day test positivity rate rose to 14.3%.


STATE OF ILLINOIS: 128,246 New Cases, 386 Deaths Over Past Week; 5,689 Illinoisans Hospitalized

The Illinois Department of Public Health today reported 128,246 new confirmed and probable cases of coronavirus disease in Illinois, including an increase of 386 deaths since Dec. 23, 2021.

Just since yesterday, the state added a record 30,386 new cases and 87 additional deaths.

Currently, IDPH is reporting a total of 2,149,548 cases, including 27,821 deaths, in 102 counties in Illinois. The age of cases ranges from younger than 1 to older than 100 years.

Since Thursday, Dec. 23, 2021, laboratories have reported 1,260,179 specimens for a total of 44,469,630. As of last night, 5,689 individuals in Illinois were reported to be in the hospital with COVID-19. Of those, 1,010 patients were in the ICU and 565 patients with COVID-19 were on ventilators.

The preliminary seven-day statewide positivity for cases as a percent of total test from December 23-29, 2021 is 10.2%. The preliminary seven-day statewide test positivity from December 23-29, 2021 is 14.4%.

A total of 19,176,277 vaccines have been administered in Illinois as of last midnight. The seven-day rolling average of vaccines administered daily is 46,046 doses.

Since Thursday, Dec. 23, 2021, 322,324 doses were reported administered in Illinois. Of Illinois’ total population, more than 72% has received at least one COVID-19 vaccine dose and more than 64% of Illinois’ total population is fully vaccinated, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

All data are provisional and will change. Additional information and COVID-19 data can be found at

Vaccination is the key to ending this pandemic. To find a COVID-19 vaccination location near you, go to


Previous Post


Vaccination Information Resources

State of Illinois COVID-19 Data