MDH data: Two more school staffers die of COVID-19 

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ST. PAUL, Minnesota. Oct. 28, 2021 – Seven school staff members have now died of COVID-19 so far this school year, nearly equaling the eight staffers who died the entire previous school year, according to data released Thursday by the Minnesota Department of Health. 

The department’s weekly summary of COVID-19 infections and deaths related to schools of all kinds reported two new deaths of school staff members, bringing the total to 15 since August 2020. Since the first week of September 2021, seven staffers and one student have died of COVID-19. 

“It’s tragic and frustrating that so many school staff members have died this school year,” said Denise Specht, president of Education Minnesota. “We know so much more about what works this year to keep students and educators safe compared to last year.” 

The Minnesota Department of Health considered the latest deaths to be associated with schools of all kinds, but the department did not provide specific details. 

Specht called on MDH to release anonymous summary information about school staff members who have died and the more than 380 students and staff members who have been hospitalized with COVID-19. 

“Sadly, the number of educators and students hurt by COVID-19 is large enough that the state should be able to protect patient privacy while giving summary information, like the percentage who were vaccinated, or the type of school where they worked,” she said. “All these deaths are tragic, but we should be able to learn from them in a responsible way and protect our school communities.”  

The health department’s weekly report is available here: 

About Education Minnesota
Education Minnesota is the voice for professional educators and students. Education Minnesota’s members include teachers and education support professionals in Minnesota’s public school districts, faculty members at Minnesota’s community and technical colleges and University of Minnesota campuses in Duluth and Crookston, retired educators and student teachers. Education Minnesota is affiliated with the American Federation of Teachers, National Education Association and AFL-CIO.

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