Esri to provide US school data during COVID-19 pandemic

April 8, 2020  - By

Location intelligence company Esri will be making data layers available on U.S. school closures during the COVID-19 pandemic, through a new partnership with MCH Strategic Data.

To help educational organizations as well as families across the nation better understand the situation in their communities, Esri and MCH have made school closure data accessible from a public dashboard.

Information on K-12 public and private schools include whether they are closed, plans for reopening school buildings, and the type of instruction they are offering during closures due to the epidemic.

MCH Strategic Data compiles and provides institutional information for the education, healthcare, government, and religious sectors.

“These datasets are useful for governments, school officials, and businesses providing leadership, resources, and community programs during the COVID-19 response,” said Ryan Lanclos, Esri director of public safety solutions. “But of utmost importance, this is a source of critical information for the community. It provides transparent and useful information that can help families develop a personal plan when they are feeling their most vulnerable.”

“Our customers depend on us to provide insight to the school market so they can respond effectively and appropriately during this challenging time,” said Kelly Holder, MCH chief information officer. “Our ability to rapidly compile and normalize changing data against our comprehensive U.S. database provides timely insight during an important time in the school planning cycle. This free map and database puts information into the hands of organizations who want to help schools and families now and in the coming months.”

As the COVID-19 outbreak has escalated rapidly across the globe, and with municipalities struggling to respond, MCH and Esri have built out additional resources like the MCH School Status Updates to help organizations quickly visualize and understand the current situation, as well as identify potential community risk areas when schools begin to open back up, and estimate the capacity needed to respond.

The Esri COVID-19 GIS Hub provides much of this essential data, along with case locations and social vulnerability, that communities and health organizations can use to inform their response.

For more information on Esri’s disaster relief support, visit

Screenshot: Esri, USGS, MCH

Screenshot: Esri, USGS, MCH

About the Author: Tracy Cozzens

Senior Editor Tracy Cozzens joined GPS World magazine in 2006. She also is editor of GPS World’s newsletters and the sister website Geospatial Solutions. She has worked in government, for non-profits, and in corporate communications, editing a variety of publications for audiences ranging from federal government contractors to teachers.