Transparency and Trust

Testing and Transparency Icon

Slow the Spread

The “T” in “VITAL” stands for both Transparency and Testing. As the CDC has noted: “Open and timely communication is key to prevent further transmission and allows for immediate intervention.”

APS Current Dashboard

APS’ current dashboard for case reporting provides little information.


Reporting cases quickly is important because most COVID-19 is transmitted frequently and easily within households, by both children and adults, usually to more than half the household members within days of the index case’s exposure. Parents and teachers have many questions about notification, contact tracing, and other policies related to return to school buildings. Awareness of COVID-19 levels in your community has been found to be as effective at changing behaviors as government lockdowns in South Korea.

Smart Restart APS made a chart from minimal APS information when only a small number of students and staff were reporting (below). The percentage of students and staff who were affected by COVID-19 was as high as 11-23% from the Level 1 return to school in the fall and early winter.

Graphic of Student Cases

Now the information on APS’ tiny dashboard is more inexact, because there is a larger denominator being used, making it impossible to continue tracking cases within Level 1 staff and students. The format makes it impossible to understand any meaningful trend, or to know anything about what’s happening at your school.

We look forward to seeing a new dashboard that is much more detailed will be put into place.

Best Practices: Miami-Dade Public School’s Dashboard

Visit the Miami-Dade Dashboard

Miami-Dade has a detailed dashboard for timely communication of potential cases and exposures in schools, and to help school communities understand trends.

Sample Positive Case Notification from DC Public Schools