Morning Briefing April 5, 2021: Detroit public schools go virtual for 2 weeks, city’s strategies aim to vaccinate all Detroiters

Here are this morning’s top stories

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Detroit public schools temporarily switch to virtual learning for 2 weeks

Students at Detroit public schools will learn virtually for two weeks following their return from spring break, officials announced Friday.

According to the Detroit Public Schools Community District, students and staff will commence virtual learning for the weeks of April 5 and April 12 “as a safety precaution,” as COVID-19 cases surge in Michigan and Metro Detroit.

Officials say the temporary switch to online learning is designed to “allow employees and students a week of social isolation after spring break to limit the spread of COVID-19.”

Learn more here.

Detroit unveils new plans to get as many people as possible vaccinated

The city of Detroit is rolling out public service announcements that feature Detroiters talking about their COVID vaccine experience. It’s not the only strategy the city has to get everyone vaccinated.

“As the weather gets nice outside, people are letting their guard down. Let’s just be honest, our numbers are very concerning,” said Detroit chief public health officer Denise Fair. “We are headed in the wrong direction -- 15% percent positivity. Just a few weeks ago, we were at a mere 3%.”

See the full story here.

New today: Michigan opens COVID vaccine eligibility to 16+ 💉

Delta cancels over 100 flights, opens some middle seats

Delta Air Lines canceled about 100 flights Sunday due to staff shortages, and it opened up middle seats a month earlier than expected in order to carry more passengers.

The airline says it had over 1 million passengers during the past few days, the highest number since before the coronavirus pandemic began last year.

“We apologize to our customers for the inconvenience, and the majority have been rebooked for the same travel day,” the airline said Sunday in a statement.

Read more here.

Fire rips through Riverview apartment complex

A fire broke out at an apartment complex in Riverview late Sunday, forcing residents out of their home.

Firefighters were working to extinguish the blaze at the Riverview Crossings apartment building through the night.

See the scene here.

Live at 10:15 today: Day 6 coverage of Derek Chauvin’s trial in George Floyd’s death

Weather: Mild Monday with chance of rain

Coronavirus in Michigan 💉

The number of confirmed cases of the coronavirus (COVID-19) in Michigan has risen to 692,206 as of Saturday, including 16,218 deaths, state officials report.

Saturday’s update includes a total of 8,413 new cases and 57 additional deaths -- including 51 identified during a review of records, meaning they did not occur between Friday and Saturday. Saturday’s case total was the highest one-day total for new cases since Dec. 4.

On Friday, the state reported a total of 683,793 cases and 16,161 deaths. 

The state no longer provides coronavirus data updates on Sundays; the next update is expected Monday afternoon.

Related: Michigan’s coronavirus surge worst in nation, data shows

The state of Michigan reported a total of 577,141 recoveries from COVID-19 on Saturday.

Testing has been steady around 35,000 diagnostic tests reported per day on average, with the 7-day positive rate above 14% as of Friday, the highest since early December. The state has reported an up-tick in hospitalizations over the last several weeks.

Michigan’s 7-day moving average for daily cases was 5,662 on Saturday -- the highest since early December. The 7-day death average was 27 on Saturday and has remained largely flat for several weeks. The state’s fatality rate is 2.4%. The state also reports “active cases,” which were listed at 98,800 on Saturday.

Related: Michigan COVID hospitalizations: Concerns grow as more younger adults are in ICU

Michigan has reported more than 4.5 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine administered as of Friday, with 35.2% of residents having received at least one dose.

Here’s a look at more of the data:

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