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Cobb school district updates COVID info for first time in a month as group obtains backlogged data

The school district had not previously updated data since Dec. 17 before Friday.

COBB COUNTY, Ga. — The Cobb County School District on Friday updated its COVID-19 case data for the first time in more than a month, as a group obtained the backlogged data and posted it to Twitter.

Archived screenshots of the CCSD COVID-19 case notification page show that it was not updated at least between Dec. 17 and Jan. 18. On Friday, Jan. 21, it was updated to show the case data for the week of Jan. 14-21.

RELATED: Cobb schools discontinue contact tracing after state updates COVID guidelines

That coincided with the watchdog group Watching the Funds - Cobb posting the backlogged data through Jan. 13, which the group said it obtained through an open records request.

11Alive has reached out to the district to verify the group's data. As of 3:15 p.m. Saturday afternoon, the district has not responded.

The updated CCSD COVID data page — which does not include a school-by-school breakdown, as it did previously — included this message from the district which was dated to Saturday, Jan. 22:

Cobb Schools updated the District’s Public Health Protocols in order to balance the importance of in-person learning and the frequent changes associated with COVID-19. We remain committed to providing options which support safe, high-quality learning environments for all 110,000 of our students, their families, and our staff. We appreciate the support and guidance provided by state public health and Governor Brian Kemp.

As a result of recent changes to the District’s public health protocols, and their impact on accurate COVID-19 case counts, Superintendent Chris Ragsdale announced that the District’s COVID-19 Tracker will now post the weekly total of all confirmed cases.

Previously, the district's data page reported cumulative totals since the beginning of the school year. Now it displays a weekly total.

The data included in Watching the Funds - Cobb's spreadsheet indicate that reported total cases in the district have spiked with the return of students from winter break. 

Earlier this month, the district said it would discontinue contact tracing after the state issued relaxed guidelines for the practice, as well as for quarantining.