Students at 42 Charter School arrive on the first day of in-person classes since COVID-19 shuttered schools in March of 2020. (Michael Isaac Stein/The Lens)

The NOLA Public Schools district is tracking 155 “active” COVID-19 cases and 424 people are in quarantine after coming into contact with a positive case,, the district reported Monday. 

That’s a drop from the 268 cases the district was tracking last week and the week prior. Both the city’s daily average new case count and test positivity rate have been declining in recent weeks as well.

Over 50 of the district’s roughly 80 programs that report said there were zero cases and zero quarantines. Case counts have been trending down, though it’s unclear if that means they truly recorded zero cases and quarantines or had trouble reporting, as some schools have had in the past.

As of Monday, the district had reported 7,094 cases over the course of the school year.

Last week, district officials said they’d received 40,000 rapid antigen tests from the federal government and expected to distribute them all to city schools by last Friday. 

Over the last week, the district facilitated 19,476 tests with a positivity rate of .85 percent. That should yield 165 cases, though the district only reported 155 cases.

The 155 cases were among 142 students and 13 staff members across 39 campuses.

The city is averaging 61 new cases per day — the lowest average since Dec. 15. 

Officials also said a majority of schools have scheduled testing for students in the latter half of next week, so they can know their COVID-19 status before returning to school after the Mardi Gras break. 

The district will not provide a weekly case update next week due to Mardi Gras break. The next report will come on March 7. 

Marta Jewson

Marta Jewson covers education in New Orleans for The Lens. She began her reporting career covering charter schools for The Lens and helped found the hyperlocal news site Mid-City Messenger. Jewson returned...