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Coronavirus Cases Still Rising in Arlington Amid Renewed Focus on Masks

(Updated at 11:05 a.m.) Earlier this summer, new coronavirus cases were reaching new lows. Now cases remain on the rise across the county, Commonwealth and the country.

In Arlington today another 18 cases were reported, bringing the seven-day trailing average up to 16 cases per day, the highest point since May 5.

Thanks to vaccinations, serious complications from Covid remain at relatively low levels. Over the past two months, two Covid-related deaths and 20 new hospitalizations have been reported in Arlington.

But the more contagious Delta variant of the virus is in some cases infecting even those who have been fully vaccinated. A new metric published by the Virginia Dept. of Health reports 1,377 known “breakthrough” cases, resulting in 114 hospitalizations and 37 deaths.

“Over 99% of COVID-19 cases in Virginia have occurred in people who were not fully vaccinated,” State Health Commissioner M. Norman Oliver was quoted as saying in a county press release Tuesday. “I continue to encourage everyone who is able to get vaccinated to do so.”

Arlington’s health department has now administered more than 150,000 vaccine doses, the press release notes.

“As of Monday (July 26), the Arlington County Public Health Division has given more than 150,000 COVID-19 vaccine doses!” the county said. “Overall in Arlington, a total of 264,500 doses have been administered and 132,000+ people are fully vaccinated. The vaccines are free, safe and still the best protection against COVID-19.”

As cases rise, talk of mask and vaccine-related requirements have heated up in recent days.

Students at Montgomery County and Fairfax County public schools will be required to wear masks inside schools this fall regardless of vaccination status, the school systems announced this week. Arlington Public Schools has yet to make a formal announcement of its mask policy for the fall; Virginia is strongly recommending that all elementary school students, teachers and staff wear masks.

President Biden is expected to announce tomorrow that all federal employees must be vaccinated or face “repeated testing mandates,” the Washington Post reports. Fairfax County is also mulling a vaccination requirement for its municipal employees.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, meanwhile, updated its mask guidance yesterday to recommend that even vaccinated people wear masks in indoor, public settings where prevalence of the virus is elevated. There is some disagreement among experts as to whether the mask guidance will make a substantial difference in combating the spread of the virus, in part because many are likely to ignore the guidance.

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YULA’s ultimate frisbee spring season is now open for registration. We offer programs for middle and high schoolers – open to all players, whether they are new or have previous experience.Middle SchoolIn the Middle School league, mixed-gender teams practice once during the week and have games on Sunday afternoons. Spring league is a fun, safe, and positive environment. The season begins mid-March and wraps up with a tournament in early June. There are several options for practice days, so we can often work around schedule conflicts with other sports & activities.High SchoolThe High School program is organized by school of attendance and teams are classified by gender. New players will learn the basics in a supportive, welcoming environment. Experienced players will continue to develop their skills, and enjoy competition with other high school programs. The season concludes with a state level championship tournament in late May.All players are guided by experienced coaches who emphasize sportsmanship and good spirit. Ultimate is a fun sport with great camaraderie!YULA does not want finances to limit anyone from participating. Our middle school program offers a “Pay What You Can” cost structure and our our high school program is offering a $50 discount to new players.Visit our website to register and learn more. Sign up with a friend, but don’t delay, the season starts in March!http://www.yula-ulti.org

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The Arlington-Aachen High School exchange is returning this summer and currently accepting applicants.

The sister-city partnership started in 1993 by the Arlington Sister Cities Association, which seeks to promote Arlington’s international profile through a variety of exchanges in education, commerce, culture and the arts. The exchange, scheduled June 17th to July 4th, includes a two-week homestay in Aachen plus three days in Berlin. Knowledge of the German language is not required for the trip.

Former participants have this to say:

_”The Aachen exchange was an eye-opening experience where I was fully immersed in the life of a German student. I loved biking through the countryside to Belgium, having gelato and picnics in the town square, and hanging out with my German host student’s friends. My first time out of the country, the Aachen exchange taught me to keep an open mind, because you never know what could be a life changing experience.” – Kelly M._

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Submit your own Announcement here.

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