Getting your Evanston news from Facebook? Try the Evanston RoundTable’s free daily and weekend email newsletters – sign up now!

In a Dec. 11 letter to the School District 65 community, Superintendent Devon Horton said a decision about whether to reopen the schools for in-person learning would be announced no later than Jan. 5. He said that a decision to reopen the schools would be made using the metrics posted on the District’s website. The RoundTable discussed the metrics in an article available here.

In two of its metrics, District 65 says it will not open the schools if there are “Three consecutive days averaging greater than or equal to 8% positivity rate (7 day rolling average)” in Suburban Cook County (Region 10) or if there is a “Positivity rate exceeding 3% in attendance-area zip codes.”

There are three populated zip codes that are entirely within the boundaries of District 65: 60201, 60202 and 60203. In addition, zip code 60076 is partially within the boundaries of District 65. Two of the populated zip codes, 60201 and 60202, make up the lion’s share of District 65. These two zip codes are the zip codes for the populated areas of the City of Evanston.

Today, the test positivity rate for cases in Evanston is 3.8%. The test positivity rate for positive tests for Suburban Cook County was 9.3% as of Dec. 30, the most recent data posted by IDPH.

Some District 65 parents have urged the District to open the schools for in-person learning, and questioned the metrics being used by the District. They say that schools have safely opened throughout the country, and the benefits outweigh the risks. For more on this, click here.

Today, the number of new cases of Evanstonians was 8, a decrease from yesterday’s 24. The number of new cases in the State was 4,762, compared to yesterday’s 7,201. The Illinois Department of Public Health said, “Due to the holidays, the number of cases may be low.”