Harrison County Judge Chad Sims announced Monday that the county has added 286 new cases of COVID-19 this past week, with six additional fatalities.

This brings the county’s death total from the virus up to 76.

“Please be cautious, help stop the spread and remember these families in your prayers,” Sims said.

Additionally, Elysian Fields Independent School District dismissed students from all campuses Monday morning as a matter of safety due to COVID-19.

Administrators said all campuses and district offices will be closed to students until Tuesday, Feb. 2.

“This brief switch to virtual learning is being done out of an abundance of caution due to some COVID-19 positives and resulting close-contact quarantines recently in our district,” EFISD administrators announced on the district’s Facebook page.

Students were released at 10:15 a.m. Monday.

“Teachers and staff will continue to report to work and will switch to virtual learning beginning Tuesday, January 26,” the district indicated.

Parents with questions regarding virtual learning for their student are urged to contact their child’s teacher or campus administration for more information.


There has been a decrease in the number of reported new deaths in Texas due to COVID-19, the illness caused by the coronavirus, according to the state health department.

There were 208 additional deaths reported Sunday after 407 new deaths were reported Saturday following three consecutive days of more than 1,200 new deaths, according the department. The death toll stands at 34,322.

The health department reported more than 11,000 new virus cases for a total of 1.96 million since the pandemic began. The number of COVID-19 patients hospitalized decline from 13,309 to 12,899.

The seven-day rolling average of deaths in Texas has risen during the past two weeks from 260.57 per day to 326.14, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. The state ranked ninth in the United States in the number of new cases per capita with 1,012.33 per 100,000 residents, according to the Johns Hopkins data.

The Johns Hopkins information also shows the positivity rate in Texas has declined from 24.89 percent to 16 percent and the seven-day rolling average of new cases fell from 23,043.57 per day to 18,771.57.

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