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    Iowa’s pro-Trump governor is in a heated battle with education districts and teachers over the push to reopen schools. On Wednesday the statewide teachers union announced a lawsuit claiming Republican Gov. Kim Reynolds can’t reinforce local policy. In this May 6, 2020 file photo, President Donald Trump speaks during a meeting with Gov. Kim Reynolds, R-Iowa, in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington.  (AP) "The Iowa State Education Association and the Iowa City Community School District are filing a lawsuit to confirm the authority of local school districts and their boards of directors in making decisions in the best interest of health and safety regarding school closures, virtual learning and other important measures," the ISEA said in a news release Wednesday. The state said its next steps for the children is beyond science and politics — and economic concerns and health fears. “Education is fundamental to...
    HARRISBURG, Pa. (KDKA) — With classes starting again at local schools, state leaders convened one more time to take a look at how the start of the school year will proceed. The Pennsylvania departments of health and education spoke in front of the Senate Education Committee on Wednesday. “Ruining lives going forward,” said Rep. Josh Kail. “I remembered having a lot of discussions in Washington and Beaver counties. The delay in education for children will be substantial.” “I want them to go back to school as bad as any other parent. … But what I don’t want is that I put my child in a position that they are one of that five percent,” said Pennsylvania Secretary of Education Pedro Rivera. “We don’t want to do fall into the trap that we fell into with taverns and restaurants. I think our superintendents are capable of doing that....
    Teachers across the U.S. are protesting, calling in sick, quitting or taking early retirement rather than return to classrooms during a pandemic killing more than a thousand Americans a day. Some of the country's biggest school systems, including in Chicago and Los Angeles, are opting to remain closed to in-person instruction this fall. But others are plowing ahead with getting students back to class. Georgia, Indiana, Mississippi and Tennessee are among the states where schools have started opening, mostly in the suburbs and rural areas. But the openings have not all gone smoothly, and teachers and their unions are decrying plans they feel don't take their safety into account. Get Breaking News Delivered to Your Inbox The 1.7-million American Federation of Teachers is calling for "safety strikes" if teachers are not protected, while the Florida State Education Association is asking a court to overturn a state order mandating that schools physically open five...
    By Ryan J. Foley | Associated Press IOWA CITY, Iowa — An aggressive push by Iowa’s pro-Trump governor to reopen schools amid a worsening coronavirus outbreak has descended into chaos, with some districts and teachers rebelling and experts calling the scientific benchmarks used by the state arbitrary and unsafe. The clash in the Midwest has illustrated in condensed form the tension between science and politics — and between economic concerns and health fears — that has characterized the nation’s response to the outbreak from the White House on down. The virus has devastated the U.S. economy and killed over 170,000 Americans. “We’re about to see a tragedy occur in the state. And there’s not a lot we can do about it. That’s frightening,” said Sara Anne Willette of Ames, a parent and former math tutor who runs a website tracking state infection data. At issue is Republican Gov. Kim...
    IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — An aggressive push by Iowa’s pro-Trump governor to reopen schools amid a worsening coronavirus outbreak has descended into chaos, with some districts and teachers rebelling and experts calling the scientific benchmarks used by the state arbitrary and unsafe. The clash in the Midwest has illustrated in condensed form the tension between science and politics — and between economic concerns and health fears — that has characterized the nation’s response to the outbreak from the White House on down. The virus has devastated the U.S. economy and killed over 170,000 Americans. “We’re about to see a tragedy occur in the state. And there’s not a lot we can do about it. That’s frightening,” said Sara Anne Willette of Ames, a parent and former math tutor who runs a website tracking state infection data. At issue is Republican Gov. Kim Reynolds’ mandate in July that districts offer...
    By RYAN J. FOLEY, Associated Press IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — An aggressive push by Iowa’s pro-Trump governor to reopen schools amid a worsening coronavirus outbreak has descended into chaos, with some districts and teachers rebelling and experts calling the scientific benchmarks used by the state arbitrary and unsafe. The clash in the Midwest has illustrated in condensed form the tension between science and politics — and between economic concerns and health fears — that has characterized the nation's response to the outbreak from the White House on down. The virus has devastated the U.S. economy and killed over 170,000 Americans. “We’re about to see a tragedy occur in the state. And there’s not a lot we can do about it. That’s frightening,” said Sara Anne Willette of Ames, a parent and former math tutor who runs a website tracking state infection data. At issue is Republican Gov. Kim Reynolds’...
    IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — An aggressive push by Iowa’s pro-Trump governor to reopen schools amid a worsening coronavirus outbreak has descended into chaos, with some districts and teachers rebelling and experts calling the scientific benchmarks used by the state arbitrary and unsafe. The clash in the Midwest has illustrated in condensed form the tension between science and politics — and between economic concerns and health fears — that has characterized the nation’s response to the outbreak from the White House on down. The virus has devastated the U.S. economy and killed over 170,000 Americans. “We’re about to see a tragedy occur in the state. And there’s not a lot we can do about it. That’s frightening,” said Sara Anne Willette of Ames, a parent and former math tutor who runs a website tracking state infection data. At issue is Republican Gov. Kim Reynolds’ mandate in July that districts...
    SAN ANTONIO – Most Bexar County schools are beginning the school year with remote learning, but questions remain about how districts and school systems will report positive student or staff member COVID-19 cases when in-person instruction returns, which could be as soon as Sept. 8. Earlier this month, San Antonio Metro Heath updated its directive that issued guidance on how public, private and other school systems should report any positive COVID-19 cases. The directive stated school districts are required to report to Metro Health weekly the number of COVID-19 positive students and teachers, the percentage of staff and students absent or sent home in the last 14 days due to COVID-like illness and the number of students with influenza-like illness. RELATED: All of the start dates, COVID-19 plans for San Antonio-area school districts The directive added that “district and private school administrative offices, including charter schools, shall post weekly on...
    St. Paul Public Schools students will be learning from home on Election Day, even if the district returns to in-person classes by then. The school board on Tuesday approved a late change to the district’s 2020-21 calendar, joining a growing number of districts that are keeping students out of school on Election Day for safety reasons. Twelve schools in the St. Paul district also served as polling places for the March primary. Of the state’s 20 largest school districts, at least eight others will not have students at school Nov. 3, the Pioneer Press found earlier this year. The calendar change makes Nov. 3 a digital learning day, meaning all St. Paul district students will study from home. The school district is starting the school year with all grades in distance learning Sept. 8 but could switch to some level of in-person instruction as early as Oct. 19, depending on...
    During a normal year, an estimated 15 million students ride the bus to school every weekday in the US — about a third of all K–12 students. But health and safety precautions as a result of COVID-19 mean far fewer kids will find a seat on the bus as the new school year begins. Transporting kids to school in a bus is suddenly fraught with peril. School districts are scrambling to answer a series of vital questions as they open their doors: how do you socially distance on a bus? Where should temperatures be screened? If masks are mandatory, what about kids with disabilities? But most of all, how do you transport millions of kids to and from school every day in the safest way possible while accepting the least amount of risk? The News Brig interviewed school bus drivers, union leaders, district transportation directors, and national experts to...
    BRADLEY, Ill. (CBS) — As many students prepare to log on to get back to school at home, there are still some districts that will be starting the traditional way. But as CBS 2’s Jermont Terry reported Tuesday night, it is not clear how long those districts will keep their doors open. It is the start of a new year at Bradley-Bourbonnais Community High School. “For first time in my 17 years as a superintendent, I don’t know what the first day’s going to look and feel like,” said Scott Wakeley, superintendent of Bradley-Bourbonnais Community Schools. Wakeley said signs informing students to cover their faces will greet them first. “I never thought the most important thing we have isn’t the technology, it’s these very thin masks that we have to wear that’s going to keep us all safe,” Wakeley said. Then, security guards will check temperatures of everyone entering the...
    CHICAGO (CBS) — Riverside, Brookfield, Lockport and New Lenox. The number of school districts around the Chciago-area making a last minute move to remote learning is skyrocketing. CBS 2’s Chris Tye reports it has everything to do with new Illinois Department of Public Health policy changes for the school year, and a hurdle many cant meet at this late date. Guidelines for the new school year came out in late June and again in late July. School leaders weren’t ready for another round of sweeping guidelines in mid-August. But that’s what happened, knocking out any chance for in person learning for thousands of kids. Massive pandemic rule changes are making the start of the school year even tougher. “Our schools were not built for a pandemic,” said Kathi Griffin, President of the Illinois Education Association. The Illinois Department of Public Health released new, tougher guidelines last week, drastically tightening in-person...
    At least six school districts in Middlesex County have decided to reopen schools remotely during the coronavirus outbreak, superintendents said. North Brunswick Township Schools and the South Plainfield School District are the latest to postpone classroom instruction due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Gov. Phil Murphy’s latest executive order allows school districts to begin the academic year with virtual-only learning from home. Perth Amboy, New Brunswick, Piscataway and Highland Park previously announced plans to start the school year with all-remote instruction. And North Brunswick Township Superintendent of Schools Brian Zychowski and South Plainfield Superintendent of Schools Noreen Lishak told parents this week that their boards of education are submitting plans to the state Department of Education to start 2020-21 instruction all-remote. “The Governor’s latest executive order was initiated by legitimate health and safety concerns for students and educators,” Zychowski said. He said the school district will re-evaluate plans for the second...
    BOSTON (AP) — About 70% of Massachusetts public school districts plan to bring children back to the classroom at least part-time this fall, Gov. Charlie Baker said Tuesday. Those districts plan either a hybrid model or full in-person instruction, he said at a news conference to discuss the state's response to the coronavirus pandemic. More than 370 districts have reported their fall plans to state education officials, he said. “We're encouraged that nearly three quarters of the school districts are planning for at least a partial in-person learning experience for kids," the Republican said. “Students have been away from their classrooms and their teachers and peers since March. Since then we have learned a tremendous amount about COVID and have put together guidelines to allow for a productive and safe learning environment that adapts to the challenges that come with COVID-19." The governor has long made clear his desire for...
    Utah teachers are resigning in droves — or retiring early — as some districts plan to return to in-person classes amid the coronavirus pandemic, according to new reports. In Salt Lake County — where the number of cases has been the highest in the state — at least 79 educators have decided to leave their posts, The Salt Lake Tribune reported this week. At least 16 of those resignations have come in the past week, as the first day of school approaches, according to the report. The Granite School District, one of the five in the county, is losing the largest number of teachers, according to the report. Thirty-two are quitting and a dozen are retiring, including Jan Roberts, a 54-year-old third-grade teacher. “The thought of going back into the classroom to teach was just so incredibly stressful,” Roberts told the Tribune. “I couldn’t risk making any of my students...
    By: KDKA-TV News Staff HARRISBURG (KDKA) — Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro is warning school districts in the state that background checks into employees’ criminal histories are necessary after a recent investigation revealed some districts are not doing their due diligence. “In the course of a criminal investigation, we learned that some public schools in Pennsylvania may not be properly checking the statewide child abuse database and maintaining records for every employee,” said Attorney General Josh Shapiro. “The law requires that school districts check and keep these records because we need them to help keep children safe. We shared our findings with every district as a warning call so that Pennsylvania children are better protected in the future.” In Pennsylvania, employees must be cleared by the state’s child abuse database, and school districts must consult with the FBI and State Police on all volunteers’ and employees’ criminal histories, should...
    One school district in Arizona was forced to cancel classes after teachers staged a "sickout," BuzzFeed News reports. The J.O. Combs Unified School District was scheduled to return to in-classroom learning Monday. The districts governing board voted to go back to the classroom even though it failed to meet the criteria provided by the state, according to a statement from staff members that was obtained by BuzzFeed News. "Any reopening to in-person school before the guideline metrics developed by the AZ Department of Health represent a serious disregard for the safety of both students and staff," the statement from staff members said. In a letter sent to parents Friday, the school districts superintendent Gregory Wyman informed parents school would be canceled Monday after he received an "overwhelming response from staff indicating that they do not feel safe returning to classrooms with students." "In response, we have received a high volume...
    Teachers in Utah are resigning in droves over coronavirus safety concerns just days before the new school year is set to begin. In Salt Lake County, at least 79 educators have either resigned or retired early due to fears of COVID-19 spreading in schools, the Salt Lake Tribune reported. Of those resignations, at least 16 were given just last week. ARIZONA TEACHERS 'SICK OUT' FORCES SCHOOL DISTRICT TO DELAY PLANNED IN-PERSON REOPENING “The thought of going back into the classroom to teach was just so incredibly stressful,” Jan Roberts, who has retired at age 54, told the paper. “I couldn’t risk making any of my students sick or getting sick myself.” Roberts is one of 12 teachers retiring from the Granite School District before classes begin, the highest number in the county, the paper reported. The district, one of five in the county, also has the most educators quitting, reporting 32...
    Schools throughout Georgia are opening for instruction – some in-person with a virtual/remote option for students, and some in a full remote or hybrid A/B model. Understandably, there is apprehension and uncertainty from students, educators, staff, parents, and community members. Opinions and emotions are running high as families, educators, and school leaders work to navigate a landscape none of us have ever encountered or experienced. When COVID-19 began hitting our state’s educational system last March, the situation was challenging but the timing had a silver lining as we approached natural “breaks” in the school calendar – Spring Break, a testing season we were able to suspend, and the short-term wrap-up of the school year. The start of the 2020-21 school year is just that – the start. There are going to be lasting and long-term challenges, no stopgap or...
    By: KDKA-TV News Staff PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — School districts in Pennsylvania are raising concerns about transportation needs for students. Some districts say plans for bussing remain the same, while others have canceled their contracts with bus companies until in-person classes resume. The Department of Education plans to release guidance on the issue. For more information on which districts have released their plans on how students will attend classes, visit this page.
    By Andrew Hay (Reuters) - A Nebraska school district said on Saturday it had canceled classes after staff members tested positive for the new coronavirus, the latest state to see instruction disrupted after resuming in-person learning. Three staff members have the virus that causes COVID-19 and 24 more are in quarantine for exposure in the Broken Bow School District about 190 miles (300 km) west of Omaha, superintendent Darren Tobey said in a statement. Preschool and grade 6 to 12 classes are canceled until Aug. 24. President Donald Trump has made reopening schools a re-election campaign issue, threatening to pull federal funding if institutions fail to do so, but resumption of classroom teaching ran into trouble in several states this week. Broken Bow's cancellation followed the closure of schools in Tennessee, Georgia and Alabama in recent days as students and staff were infected or forced to self-isolate. There is no...
            by Todd Defeo  Schools in Ohio are planning to employ a mix of in-person, at-home and hybrid options when schools reopen, according to the Ohio Department of Education. Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the state has left the decision on how to start the new school year to individual school districts. A total of 325 public school districts with about 590,000 students plan to return to school full-time, according to state numbers. Meanwhile, 55 districts with approximately 398,000 students will begin the school year remotely, while 154 districts with roughly 380,000 students will have a hybrid of online and in-person learning. State officials did not have information on 78 other public school districts. “I have every confidence that Ohio’s schools will do everything they can to keep children safe, but any spread happening in the broader community will, without a doubt, be reflected in Ohio’s classrooms,”...
    PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — As hundreds of Pennsylvania districts opt for virtual school years, some are canceling bus service. That is leaving private and charter schools worrying that their students will be stranded. Districts are required by law to transport private and charter students. Some districts plan to cancel bus service until their own students return to brick-and-mortar classrooms. Some districts say they’ll continue to take these students to school, as usual, even though their own campuses are closed. Pennsylvania’s Department of Education says it plans to issue guidance on the issue.
    DELAWARE COUNTY, Pa. (CBS) — Health officials in Chester and Delaware Counties are recommending the school year stay online until at least Oct. 9. At the moment, school districts in those counties have plans ranging from all in-person to all online. Health officials say their recommendation to start all online will mitigate any anticipated rise in cases as summer vacations end. After Oct. 9, the recommendations call for districts to assess their ability to add in-person classes. The recommendation exempts special education, early childhood development, or career and vocational programs.
    WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — Kansas teachers who quit because they don't feel safe returning to teaching in-person classes during the coronavirus pandemic might have to pay their school districts up to $10,000 for backing out of their contracts. Penalties for quitting or resigning are meant to help districts find replacement teachers, but schools must prove that their penalty fee is actually based on the cost of replacing that teacher and not just an arbitrary amount designed to punish teachers. Educators say heading back to school seemed a lot safer before the resignation deadlines a few months ago when the coronavirus outbreak appeared nearly under control, KMUW-FM reported. The state had reported its lowest number of new coronavirus cases in two months and businesses were slowly reopening. Some educators say it's unfair to charge teachers for escaping their contracts if the situation has changed and they no longer feel safe returning...
            by Cole Lauterbach  Many public school districts across the country have shifted from offering some in-person learning options for students to offering only remote learning at the start of the school year. The change in plans sent many working parents rushing to find either a place for their kids to go while they work or to find a caregiver they could pay to supervise remote learning at home. Either option could end up costing parents thousands of dollars. A new study released Thursday from BankRate found 3 out of 5 parents nationwide said remote learning will negatively impact their finances, with more than a third saying they would have to either reduce their hours at work or quit altogether. “These findings suggest the economic recovery will continue to be slow,” said Ted Rossman, industry analyst at Bankrate. “Most students will be learning remotely this fall, and that...
    DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Building new infrastructure to handle remote learning for thousands of students is no easy task for school districts. They have to prepare for everything from network outages to malicious hacking incidents. Monday marked the first day of virtual school for many students across North Texas. “Very different than what we’re used to,” North Garland High School principal Michael Arreola. He says things are now running smoothly after a large numbers of students had difficulty connecting to their remote classrooms Monday morning. About 5,000 complaint calls overloaded the district’s phone system. “The rest of the week our attendance continued to increase,” Arreola said. “I think all the preparation we put into being great resources for our teachers and students and parents really paid off in the end.” Dallas ISD is paying attention to the challenges other districts face as it prepares to deploy thousands of devices before school...
    PHOENIX (AP) — An Arizona school district that had planned to resume in-person classes against the advice of public health officials is now backing off after teachers refused to show up. The J. O. Combs Unified School District in Pinal County announced that classes will be canceled on Monday, and it's unclear when they'll resume. “We have received an overwhelming response from staff indicating that they do not feel safe returning to classrooms with students," Superintendent Gregory Wyman wrote in a letter to parents. “In response, we have received a high volume of staff absences for Monday citing health and safety concerns.” Wyman said all classes are canceled, including virtual classes. The Arizona Department of Health Services is publishing statistics measuring the spread of the coronavirus in each of Arizona's 15 counties. The agency has set benchmarks for the gradual reopening in-person instruction, but school districts are not required to...
    New guidelines for distance learning were revealed by Gov. Gavin Newsom and the California Department of Education in a briefing on Friday as many school districts across the state started their school year this week.Ninety percent of California students will start the 2020-2021 school year online. Newsom and State Superintendent Tony Thurmond said the state's guidelines for helping schools mitigate the digital divide among kids.The new rules call for California school districts to have access to devices and WiFi connectivity for all students, daily live interaction with teachers online, providing assignments that area "equivalent of in-person classes," as well as adapted lessons for English language learners and Special Education students."These circumstances are not ideal, but students will continue to learn, and we have to make sure we bridge any learning gaps," Thurmond said.First Inland Empire elementary school granted waiver to reopen next weekEMBED More News Videos Lucerne Valley Elementary School...
    NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) – A back-to-school reversal in New Rochelle could lead other districts to follow suit. The second largest school district in Westchester county canceled plans to start the year with limited in-school instruction. Milvia Cifuentes told CBS2’s Tony Aiello that she’s worried about her five-year-old son’s upcoming lessons over the computer. MORE: New Rochelle Superintendent Announces Classes Will Be Held Online For At Least First Month Of School Year Last month, when New Rochelle had 74 active coronavirus cases, the district announced a hybrid plan: two days in class, three days at home. On Thursday, when there were just 20 active cases in the city, the district reversed course, going for all remote learning for at least September. CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC Tri-State Coronavirus Travel Advisory Quarantine List Resources, Hotlines, Unemployment & Covering Bills Remote Learning Tools For Parents Teaching At Home CBS2’s Dr. Max Answers Your Health...
    By ANITA SNOW, Associated Press PHOENIX (AP) — A national Latino rights group Friday warned two Arizona school districts that their practice of asking about citizenship and Social Security numbers on enrollment forms violates a Supreme Court decision that ensures children have access to public education regardless of immigration status. The Mexican American Legal Defense Fund said it sent the letters by certified mail and email, demanding that Coolidge Unified School District in Pinal County east of Phoenix and St. Johns Unified School District in eastern Arizona’s Apache County revise their forms to comply with the high court’s 1982 Plyler v. Doe decision. The landmark ruling in the case, which the legal defense fund argued before the Supreme Court, said citizenship should not be a factor in ensuring all children get an education. Both communities are located in rural areas and have a substantial percentage of Latino students. “It's hard...
    SACRAMENTO (CBS SF) — Gov. Gavin Newsom on Friday outlined the progress California has made in recent months to prepare school districts for the start of the fall semester amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Newsom discussed in detail how the state has helped districts get ready for the early start of the school year with technological and financial support for distance learning required by the coronavirus. Newsom opened his comments by addressing the state’s efforts to work with school districts to prepare for the coming school year, noting the importance of a safety-first plan approach and “a robust distance learning plan” to cover the period before teachers and students are able to return to classrooms were they belong. “Our default, long term, is in-person instruction. The social-emotional benefits of in-person instruction are self-evident. The need to develop relationships, develop connections, to be inspired by teachers, that magical moment that changes the...
    SACRAMENTO (CBS SF) — Gov. Gavin Newsom on Friday outlined the progress California has made in recent months to prepare school districts for the start of the fall semester amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Newsom discussed in detail how the state has helped districts get ready for the early start of the school year with technological and financial support for distance learning required by the coronavirus. Newsom opened his comments by addressing the state’s efforts to work with school districts to prepare for the coming school year, noting the importance of a safety-first plan approach and “a robust distance learning plan” to cover the period before teachers and students are able to return to classrooms were they belong. “Our default, long term, is in-person instruction. The social-emotional benefits of in-person instruction are self-evident. The need to develop relationships, develop connections, to be inspired by teachers, that magical moment that changes the...
    Updated guidelines from the Oregon Department of Education have given teachers and parents more ideas about what they can expect from the fall school year amid COVID-19. A "toolkit" released by the department lays out scenarios for when students, teachers or staff become sick or test positive for COVID-19 on school grounds. It lists primary COVID-19 symptoms to include cough, chills, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, or temperatures of greater than 100.4 degrees in line with the CDC's reports. The plan draws a careful distinction between presumptive and near-certain levels of COVID-19 exposure, which heavily depend on whether persons involved test positive. It recommends that anyone in close contact with a person who tests positive for COVID-19 symptoms should self-isolate. The plan does not recommend that someone who has been in close contact with another person who was exposed to COVID-19 self-isolate. Department guidelines illustrate...
    By HEATHER HOLLINGSWORTH, Associated Press MISSION, Kan. (AP) — Columbus school district Superintendent Brian Smith has spent the week hauling furniture out of classrooms to make more space for social distancing as students prepare to return next week after a five-month COVID-19 imposed break. “It is almost like you are preparing for war,” Smith said. “And there is so much that can go wrong and so many unknowns.” His 950-student district is among several dozen mostly rural Kansas school systems to resume classes next week after a handful tested the waters this week. Gov. Laura Kelly sought to delay the reopening of the state’s K-12 schools for nearly a month until after Labor Day because of a resurgence in reported coronavirus cases. But the Republican-controlled State Board of Education blocked the plan last month, leaving the start of fall classes to 286 locally elected school boards. Only about 15% of...
    Programs fighting white privilege are taking center stage in a pair of Pennsylvania school districts, and board members and parents are pushing back hard against them. 'The book teaches kids not only to defy parents but to hate themselves'Gladwyne School in the Lower Merion School District — reportedly one of the richest in the nation — will require fourth and fifth graders to read "Not My Idea: A Book About Whiteness," which claims that white people who relate to police officers or don't watch the news are guilty of racism, and kindergartners and first graders will be assigned "A Kid's Book About Racism," the Washington Free Beacon reported. In response, Elana Yaron Fishbein — a mother of two boys and a doctor of social work — wrote to the district's superintendent, board members, and the school's principal demanding the school remove its "cultural proficiency" curriculum, the paper said. "The...
    Many parents in the U.S. are coming to grips with the reality that their children may not return to their schools until the fall semester of 2021. Schools that aren’t opening this fall seem to be waiting for a coronavirus vaccine, and even the most optimistic scenarios don’t envision one to be approved and widely distributed in time for the start of the spring semester in January 2021. Tragically, the lack of urgency and creative thinking from political leadership at all levels of government is allowing this to happen. Where is the audacity? As has been widely remarked — including by the American Academy of Pediatrics, which “strongly advocates” for the goal of in-person learning this fall — this is devastating for the social and emotional development of children. Educational outcomes will plunge after two or three semesters of virtual learning, food insecurity among kids will increase, and learning disparities...
    Exclusive: U.S. to make coronavirus strain for possible human challenge trials This Low-Cost Grocery Store Is the Fastest-Growing in the U.S. Masks are on superintendents back-to-school shopping lists. Some leaders wonder if there will be enough. Shari Obrenski, a high school history teacher in Cleveland, usually spends about $500 each year on paper, pencils, markers and tissues for her classroom. Coronavirus Chronicles: Teachers, students haunted by fall 2020 back-to-school unknowns USA TODAY See more videos SHARE SHARE TWEET SHARE EMAIL What to watch next Detainees complain of mistreatment as Belarus releases thousands held after protests NBC News Dr. Saphiers three questions for Bidens call for national mask mandate FOX News Trump opposes USPS funding because of mail-in voting MSNBC Israel-UAE peace deal will ripple throughout the Middle East: Rep. Mark Green Fox Business New Zealand extends its lockdown Reuters...
    (CNN)On Tuesday night, Aaron Fortner, a high school English teacher in Missoula, Montana, sat at his computer for nearly four hours watching a virtual meeting of Missoula County Public Schools' board of trustees. Leaders listened as citizens weighed in against starting the school year in person."Out of 50 or 60 public comments, only one person supported in-person learning," he said. "I was hopeful."Back to school: 7 ways to win at online learningFortner hoped on behalf of the rattled teachers he advocated for as a member of the local teacher's union. Those educators were afraid of coronavirus spreading rampantly in schools teeming with crowds of ebullient young people. Without tenure, many teachers didn't feel confident about speaking out, he said. Nonetheless, the community appeared on their side, arguing for virtual classes.But then the board voted overwhelmingly to support a hybrid model of both online and in-person learning, to be implemented when...
    TIBURON (KPIX 5) — Marin County will start accepting waiver applications Friday for elementary schools looking to reopen for in-person learning, even as many teachers continue to resist the idea. There has been a strong push by a group of vocal North Bay parents who are doing everything to make their case to reopen schools safely. It’s been almost a month since Governor Newsom made the announcement about closing schools, but state officials only updated state waiver guidelines last week. “There’s been tremendous frustration trying to find a clear answer on what the waiver process is,” said Chelsea Schlunt. Parents launched a website called ReopenMarinSchools.com which features links to sign and share petitions and to easily contact local officials who have a large say in giving the green light. “The lack of transparency around specifically, ‘This is the date that we should expect it. Here are the rules that you...
    TEXAS – As schools in Upstate prepare to begin classes in person, officials from the Dallas County Department of Health and Human Services (DCHHS) issued guidance for school districts. It is a document that details the precautions that can be taken for COVID-19 or better yet on how school officials could proceed in case a student tests positive for the virus. DCHHS created a committee to develop the guidance, but it is important to note that districts are not required to follow these suggestions because Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton previously said that local health officials do not have the authority to issue orders to shut down schools for the sole purpose of preventing future COVID-19 infections. The first step in the guide indicates that preventive measures should be taken, including the use of masks, keeping the number of groups of students and staff as small as possible, practicing...
    A recent survey of Southern California school districts showed that students from low-income families have struggled the most with online learning during the coronavirus pandemic, according to a Thursday report. The survey, conducted by the Los Angeles Times, reviewed 45 school districts in the region. It revealed a sharp digital divide between high-income and low-income communities in their ability to adjust to online learning after schools closed their campuses. A gate is locked at the closed Ranchito Elementary School in the San Fernando Valley section of Los Angeles.  (AP) DEVOS ACCUSES TEACHERS UNIONS OF CONCERN WITH 'ALTERNATIVE AGENDAS' LIKE 'DEFUNDING POLICE' OVER STUDENTS Districts from more affluent communities, like the Las Viergenes Unified School District, for instance, were able to make the transition with relative ease. After shutting down on a Friday, the school was running virtually, conducting lessons online, less than a week later, the Times...
    New York City schools can reopen for in-person learning as long as coronavirus positivity rates in the city stay below 3%, Mayor Bill de Blasio has said.[ READ: Trump: School Funds Should Follow Students ]In Tennessee's Shelby County, which includes Memphis and neighboring suburbs, schools can open for in-person instruction as long as the positivity rate in the area stays below 25%, the county health department outlined earlier this week in new guidance. In Arizona, where students began the school year virtually, the state health department published guidance for schools districts seeking to reopen in-person that recommend they maintain for two weeks a positivity rate in the district below 7%, a decline in the number of cases and a hospital admission rate due to COVID-like symptoms of 10% or less. Editorial Cartoons on EducationView All 68 ImagesPennsylvania's state health and education departments issued similar guidance earlier this week, saying schools could reopen...
    Schools in Ohio are planning to employ a mix of in-person, at-home and hybrid options when schools reopen, according to the Ohio Department of Education. Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the state has left the decision on how to start the new school year to individual school districts. A total of 325 public school districts with about 590,000 students plan to return to school full-time, according to state numbers. Meanwhile, 55 districts with approximately 398,000 students will begin the school year remotely, while 154 districts with roughly 380,000 students will have a hybrid of online and in-person learning. State officials did not have information on 78 other public school districts. “I have every confidence that Ohio’s schools will do everything they can to keep children safe, but any spread happening in the broader community will, without a doubt, be reflected in Ohio’s classrooms,” Gov. Mike DeWine said...
    Several New Jersey school districts have planned all-remote starts after Gov. Phil Murphy on Wednesday reversed his decision on reopening procedures. State activists and union leaders have been calling for changes to the school reopening plan starts ever since Murphy's administration announced academic years must begin with classroom instruction in June. The Elizabeth School District was the first to announce the all-remote start after 375 teachers refused to return over COVID-19 fears. These districts have since said they also plan on going virtual, if state education officials approve their plans: Bayonne East Orange Jersey City New Brunswick Passaic Plainfield Willingboro Schools choosing to reopen with virtual learning must show plans for satisfying the standards and anticipated date to resume in-person instruction, the governor said. Did we miss one? Email clevine@dailyvoice.com
    Meaghan Ellis August 13, 2020 0 Comments U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos criticized teachers unions as she accused them of using the coronavirus pandemic to advance a political agenda. During a Fox News interview, DeVos claimed a substantial number of school districts are disregarding the needs of students amid their concerns about the pandemic. “We have seen all too many districts and all too many schools across the country not actually addressing the needs of students anticipating school in the fall,” DeVos said on Wednesday. Despite coronavirus outbreaks in various school districts that have already opened across the United States, DeVos argues that her department’s push to reopen schools is rooted in “science.” She continued, “We all want to ensure students and teachers are safe when they are in school again, but those things can be done and can be clearly accomplished. The science is very clear on this.” DeVos insisted she is focused on making sure children are...
              School districts seeking additional funding to help offset the coronavirus pandemic can now apply for a grant from the Education Equity Fund. The fund, created by the Michigan Department of Education, is aimed at helping to close the technology gap and provide mental health services for students and staff. A little more than $37 million in funding is available. The funding is part of the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSR) Fund from the CARES Act passed by Congress this spring to help offset the effects of the coronavirus pandemic. “Federal law gave discretion of those dollars to each state department of education,” William DiSessa, a spokesperson from the Michigan Department of Education, told The Michigan Star. “The ESSER Education Equity Fund is an MDE initiative and the grant application will be sent to local school districts soon.” Although all school districts...
    By Andrew Hay (Reuters) - Some Arizona schools plan to restart in-person education on Monday in defiance of state benchmarks on when students and staff can safely return to classes during the novel coronavirus pandemic. As President Donald Trump urges schools to resume in-person learning, two greater Phoenix-area school districts this week voted to return to classes on Aug. 17 even though their counties, like all others in Arizona, have yet to meet health safety benchmarks. After hundreds of parents and students protested in Phoenix on Monday for in-person reopenings, state school superintendent Kathy Hoffman urged districts to follow the voluntary benchmarks and not put children and educators at risk. "Not following them is a disservice to the educators who continue providing instruction via distance learning and families who are supporting distance learning," Hoffman said on Twitter. Trump, a Republican, has made reopening public schools a focus of his re-election...
    PLANO, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) – Going back to school has a different look this year as both Allen and Plano districts launch with online classes only. “It went better than expected!” exclaimed a relieved Gina Rodriguez, a parent of two Plano students. “There were a few tears last night trying to figure everything out with work and everything– not from the kids, us,” she added. “Dad may have used some colorful words getting the technology set up. We just got Chromebooks yesterday from school.” Rodriguez says planning is key. “My husband and I are both educators, so we had to be on our own meetings all day. My youngest son is only 6, so we had to hire someone to help him all day. And the 10 year old is by himself trying to figure it out, so it was a lot of planning and organizing and I’ve got charts and...
    More than 65 years after a landmark Supreme Court ruling integrated schools in the United States, students of color are still facing many of the same issues when it comes to their education. Though the 1954 Brown v. The Board of Education decision marked a special moment for students and educators, it still failed to address how racism harms education for students of color beyond striking down school segregation. After the ruling, many white parents didn’t want their children being taught by a Black educator, resulting in Black teachers and principals being dismissed in large numbers. Schools lost approximately 38,000 Black educators during the transition to integrate schools, and the education system has had a difficult time getting those numbers back to an equitable level. Ultimately, the problems within Black and brown school districts come down to a lack of funding, which stems back to white families pulling their children...
    VIDEO9:1309:13Trump talks about getting kids back in schoolElections President Donald Trump said Wednesday the federal government is sending 125 million reusable face masks to school districts across the United States as schools consider whether it's safe to reopen this fall amid the coronavirus pandemic. "We have to open up our schools and open up our businesses," Trump said during a White House press conference on the coronavirus, adding that all school districts should be making plans for how to resume in-person education for students "as soon as possible."  "To support the reopening of America's schools, we provided $13 billion in elementary and secondary schools towards the CARES Act and CARES Act funding," he told reporters. "We will provide up to 125 million reusable masks to various school districts around the country." Whether and how to reopen schools in the U.S. this fall has become a hotbed issue in recent weeks....
    JERSEY CITY, New Jersey (WABC) -- New Jersey public and nonpublic pre-K through 12 schools and colleges and universities have been cleared to reopen for the upcoming academic year, Governor Murphy has announced. Schools may also opt for remote learning.Murphy said each of the 600 school districts, public and non-public schools, must certify that they can meet the New Jersey Department of Education's health and safety standards of students and staff in order for in-person instruction to resume.School districts that cannot meet all health and safety standards for safe in-person instruction will begin their school year with all-remote learning.Public school districts must show:Plans for satisfying these standardsAnticipated date to resume in-person instructionColleges and universities can resume in-person instruction as long as social distancing and other protections are followed. Any student who chooses to continue remote learning must be accommodated, Murphy said.The announcement comes after three school districts said they would...
    Reuters August 12, 2020 0 Comments New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy said on Wednesday he signed an executive order clearing both public and private schools, pre-K through 12th grade, and colleges and universities to reopen for in-person instruction in the upcoming academic year. “We have held ongoing discussions with the leaders throughout our higher education system and we believe they are ready for this step,” Murphy told a news conference. The governor said the decision on whether to implement in-person or remote learning, or a mixed approach, rested with the state’s nearly 600 public school districts as well as charter, parochial and other institutions. School districts that can’t meet all the health and safety standards put in place by the New Jersey Department of Education required for in-person instruction will begin the school year with all-remote learning, Murphy said. On June 26, the governor announced that the state’s public...
    TRENTON, N.J. (CBSNewYork) – Gov. Phil Murphy said schools and universities can reopen in New Jersey. “In person instruction may fully resume immediately should institutions so desire and so long as social distancing among other protections are strictly adhered to,” Murphy said. Students who wish to continue remote learning must be allowed to, Murphy said. “Not only will this not be a normal school year, furthermore there is no one-size-fits-all plan to this very difficult situation,” the governor said. CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC Tri-State Coronavirus Travel Advisory Quarantine List Resources, Hotlines, Unemployment & Covering Bills Remote Learning Tools For Parents Teaching At Home CBS2’s Dr. Max Answers Your Health Questions What To Do If Someone Isn’t Social Distancing Or Wearing A Mask? Expert: Parents Be Mindful Of Children’s Stress After Months Of Isolation Chopper 2 Over Empty NYC Streets, Landmarks Complete Coronavirus Coverage He said each school district faces its...
    PHOENIX (AP) — At few Arizona school districts are moving to begin in-person learning next Monday over the objections of some teachers, a decision applauded by some parents and students. The board of the Queen Creek Unified School District outside Phoenix voted Tuesday to resume in-person learning and the J.O. Combs Unified School District in nearby San Tan Valley voted Monday to begin offering in-person instruction. Both districts said they would continue to provide online learning. The Queen Creek district said in a statement that most parents wanted choices that included some form of in-person instruction. Educators had asked the school board to stick with education online until Maricopa County met public health benchmarks included in voluntary guidelines issued by the state last week. .Jacob Frantz, president of the Queen Creek Education Association, said several teachers have resigned. “It's the beginning of a crisis, Frantz told KNXV-TV. “They aren’t being...
    JERSEY CITY, New Jersey (WABC) -- New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy is expected to announce that public school districts will have the option to start the school year without in-person classes, a major change from his previous directive.The decision comes after three school districts announced they would start the academic year with 100% remote learning due to a teacher shortage after hundreds of educators said they would not return to the classroom.While the goal remains for every district in the state to have in-person learning, the administration will announce a plan to facilitate remote-only learning as an option for districts to start the school year giving parents the option.Jersey City, Bayonne and Elizabeth submitted school reopening plans to the state with no in-person classes, bowing to pressure from teacher unions and saying they are unable to reopen with in-person learning safely.The current requirement is for school districts to offer at...
    Over half of U.S. public elementary and secondary school students will study online this fall, according to new research. In addition to the 52% of students learning online, 44% will attend school in person on partial schedules, such as rotating days. Four percent of school districts remain undecided, according to a survey by Burbio, a data service that aggregates school calendars nationwide.  “We have seen a dramatic shift to online-only learning in the past three weeks,” Julie Roche, Burbio co-founder, said in a press release. “Large districts such as Chicago, and Sun Belt cities such as Houston and Miami, along with large suburban districts such as Fairfax County, Virginia, were all setting plans to return with in-person learning and shifted to fully remote.” The 200 largest districts are 66% virtual, Burbio stated. But the largest school district in the U.S. — New York City — recently announced it would have...
    With the Friday, Aug. 14, deadline to submit final school reopening plans looming large over many Massachusetts School Committees, a dozen or so districts in Western Massachusetts and Worcester County have figured it out. Faced with COVID-19 challenges, school districts are, mostly, choosing among three plans: remote education, in-class education, or a hybrid of in-class and remote learning. Districts also need to consider when the first day of school will be; Massachusetts is allowing schools to choose when to start - with Sept. 16 being the latest date possible. Typically, Massachusetts schools would open around Sept. 1. Ultimately, it is up to parents and guardians whether their students will return to in-class education in the fall. The Massachusets Commissioner of Education has said that regardless of the plan a school district comes up with, parents can choose remote learning for their children. Here are the Hampden County school districts that...
    With the Friday, Aug. 14, deadline to submit final school reopening plans looming large over many Massachusetts School Committees, a dozen or so districts in Western Massachusetts and Worcester County have figured it out. Faced with COVID-19 challenges, school districts are, mostly, choosing among three plans: remote education, in-class education, or a hybrid of in-class and remote learning. Districts also need to consider when the first day of school will be; Massachusetts is allowing schools to choose when to start - with Sept. 16 being the latest date possible. Typically, Massachusetts schools would open around Sept. 1. Ultimately, it is up to parents and guardians whether their students will return to in-class education in the fall. The Massachusets Commissioner of Education has said that regardless of the plan a school district comes up with, parents can choose remote learning for their children. Here are the Hampshire County school districts that...
    Results from the 2020 Census are important to school districts across the country – whether fast growing or not – because they  provide a baseline for the next 10  years of school planning. School districts use the numbers to ensure there are enough buildings and classrooms for children as they move through the school system. Plus, results from the 2020 Census will be used by federal, state and local officials to inform decisions on how to spend billions of dollars in federal funds on education programs like Head Start for pre-K children, free- or reduced-priced school lunches for low-income children and teacher training programs. That is why it is so important for families and caregivers to count everyone in their household when they respond to the 2020 Census, especially all children who live with them, including babies born on or before April 1. Children under five are among the nation’s most undercounted populations, and...
    JERSEY CITY, New Jersey (WABC) -- Three school districts in New Jersey announced they will start the academic year with 100% remote learning, despite a directive from Governor Phil Murphy for all districts to have plans for both in-person and virtual instruction.Many of the teachers who have to be in back in classrooms say they're not going.Schools in Jersey City, Bayonne, and now Elizabeth are among the districts bowing to pressure from teachers unions, announcing they'll start the school year virtually.In Elizabeth, officials say 375 teachers told them they were not willing to teach in person citing concerns about the spread of coronavirus.That decision is causing controversy."This affects in the negative way the most, the youngest, the kindergarten, the pre-school, the first-graders, they have to learn remotely...that's a challenge," said J. Christian Bollwage, Mayor of Elizabeth."I think they should be able to do it pretty good, based on the fact...
    SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — The school year is getting underway at some of New Mexico’s largest public school districts as teachers, students and parents deal with remote learning amid the coronavirus pandemic. Albuquerque Public Schools started Wednesday as schools in the district have been distributing technology to students, making virtual home visits, and providing guidance to staff, students and families. The Las Cruces district has outlined protocols for instruction, technology and nutrition services for that district's all-online start. “We have prepared, and we are ready,” Las Cruces Superintendent Karen Trujillo said in a statement. “Our teachers have immersed themselves in professional development training, our nutrition services team is ready to get meals moving and our technology staff has ensured that students who need devices for online learning have them in hand.” Trujillo said educators participated in more than 350 professional development webinars to prepare for the start of virtual...
    More than 100 school districts in New York still have yet to submit their reopening plans to the state, 10 days after the initial deadline, and on Monday, Gov. Andrew Cuomo laid out an ultimatum. The tardy districts must submit a plan by Friday, or they won’t be able to offer in-class education this year. “Maybe they just have determined that they don't want to open, which is the only logical conclusion,” Cuomo told reporters Monday. “But if they think they're going to open, then they have to have their plan in by Friday, period.” Cuomo’s office posted a list online of the districts that have yet to submit to either the Department of Health or the Department of Education. However, there seems to be some question about that list. The list includes such school districts as Troy and Uniondale, both of which have their plans posted...
    ELIZABETH, New Jersey (WABC) -- A school district in New Jersey announced it will start the academic year with 100% remote learning, despite a directive from Governor Phil Murphy for all districts to have plans for both in-person and virtual instruction.Officials with the Elizabeth School District say 375 of its teachers have said they will not return to the classroom because of coronavirus fears.The district says that makes in-person classes a "mathematical impossibility."The school board voted Monday night to begin the school year next month with all remote classes, and its buildings will remain closed due to the teacher shortage.The district's plan goes against state guidelines and will need approval by the state Department of Education.An administration official said Tuesday the goal remains for school districts to offer in-person learning. Several districts, including Jersey City and Elizabeth, have indicated they will not be able to start the school year with...
    San Antonio – After back and forth decisions and changing state directives, most districts are beginning the year with online learning and teachers are having to adapt, setting up a school year like no other. Under Texas Education Agency guidance, schools can teach remotely for up to eight weeks without risking full funding. After that, districts must apply for a waiver that the agency will review on a case by case basis. Emily Miketinac, a first-grade teacher at Tuscany Heights Elementary School in Northeast Independent School District, said setting up her classroom is a whole different task in the COVID era, and invited KSAT for a sneak peek. "It's a little empty right now," Miketinac said, pointing to desks still stacked in the middle of the room. "I'm not welcoming students into this classroom for at least another three weeks, so we have some time to really understand the regulations...
    HARRISBURG (KDKA) – The conversation started with sports and the governor’s recommendation last week. Now lawmakers are looking at not just athletics, but educational opportunities that students lost due to the pandemic. “One daughter had been selected for chorus fest and she missed out on that — and you know, field trips plus assemblies,” said Heather Snyder, who has three daughters in the South Butler School District. Representative Mike Reese introduced a house bill Tuesday morning that would allow local school districts to decide the future of athletics this fall. #DEVELOPING This morning two house bills were proposed that would put school districts in charge of decisions for sports this fall. Plus parents would be allowed to have their child repeat a grade due to loss of education and extracurricular activities in 2020. Details on @KDKA pic.twitter.com/biQypqfrst — Nicole Ford (@NicoleFordTV) August 11, 2020 “What works in Philly may...
    DOVER, Del. (CBS) — In Delaware, Gov. John Carney said Tuesday the state continues to work with school districts to come up with potential hybrid reopening plans. The state is expanding COVID-19 test sites so that students and teachers will be able to get tested as the school year approaches. “Each of the school districts are in the process of developing their plans, working hard with stakeholder groups. Most districts have large teams of teachers, staff, administrators and parents involved in putting those teams together,” Carney said. The state’s framework allows some districts to partially open, provided that the spread of the virus can be kept in check.
    By JEFFREY COLLINS, Associated Press COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — Most school districts in South Carolina will not open their doors to students all five days a week when they start the new academic year during the COVID-19 pandemic, even though the governor demanded all schools offer a five-day per week in-person option. The state Education Department approved the last of the reopening plans for all 81 districts in the state Monday. Just one out of every five school districts will open their doors to students five days a week, and four plans start without any in-person option for classes, although those districts promised to bring in students whose parents want them to be in a school building as soon as it is safe. On July 15, Gov. Henry McMaster said he wanted to see all schools offer a five-day per week in-person option, saying “we must have our schools available”...
    SAN ANTONIO – After weeks of frequently-changing guidance issued by state officials, local officials and the Texas Education Agency, school will soon be back in session amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Although the summer months have been filled with confusion for Texas students, parents and teachers, most local school districts now have their plans set, aided by a new directive from Metro Health addressing in-person instruction and athletics, while the community continues to experience significant community spread. All schools, public and private, are encouraged to follow the directive, which includes a school safety indicator officials can use to help them decide how to open. However, the directive is not enforceable, and state officials have said schools cannot be closed by local health authorities until an outbreak is discovered on campus. Most Bexar County schools will only offer remote instruction when the academic year begins over the next couple of weeks, while...
    Education media are reporting that most of the nation’s large public school districts have opted for a totally remote learning model this fall as concerns about the Chinese coronavirus continue. Education Week reported that, as of August 6, 17 of 20, or 85 percent, of the nation’s largest school districts are opting for a totally remote learning model of instruction. The education outlet described the decisions being made by school district leaders as “high-stakes,” and noted the situation is “rapidly evolving.” New York City, the largest school district in the country, plans to use a “hybrid/partial” learning model, which is defined as “limited, in-person reopening. May include modifications such as social distancing and student capacity limits.” See a working list of how over 300 of the nations school districts plan to reopen this fall. https://t.co/a6tPctIGos — Education Week (@educationweek) August 9, 2020 The journal Education Next also observed that, to...
    Zoom In IconArrows pointing outwards A little more than half of U.S. elementary and high school students will attend school only virtually this fall, according to a new study, as education officials struggle with an unprecedented and wrenching decision amid the coronavirus pandemic. The study by Burbio, which aggregates school and community calendars nationwide, found that 52% of students will go to school virtually only and just 25% will attend every day. The remaining 19% will have some form of hybrid schooling, combining online and in-person learning. Four percent of districts remain undecided. The situation is fluid, with new decisions announced daily and school districts often changing their minds as the virus spreads or comes under control, and as parents, teachers and politicians debate what is safest for kids, teachers and the broader community. But Burbio found a decided trend toward more virtual learning. "We have seen a dramatic shift...
    SOMERSET, Texas – Rural school districts are facing unique challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic as students start the fall semester. About 90% of students ride the bus at Somerset Independent School District, which is about 87 square miles and crosses into Atascosa County. Of the total 4,300 students enrolled in the district, 10% do not have internet access for online learning. Schools are redesigning their buildings to reduce spread of COVID-19 Last year, district bus drivers were able to deliver meals to students, but once face-to-face learning begins, Somerset ISD Superintendent Saul Hinojosa says they will not have the ability to do that. Hinojosa said concerns of families in the region include the lack of access to testing sites close to the community, internet connectivity issues and few day care options for families. “We issued many hotspots at the at the end of the year last year, and students were...
    WEST SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — Several school districts in Northern California have had to push back their start dates for distance learning while parents in districts that have started are already frustrated. Laura Ingram showed CBS13 her classroom setup. She will be teaching her kindergarten class from her dining room. Planning hasn’t been easy and her district, Washington Unified in West Sacramento, is one of the districts that pushed back the start date. “[Starting sooner] would have been an absolute mess. We wouldn’t have been prepared for it,” said Ingram. “I don’t think that we’re behind anybody else, I will say, It isn’t about being ready and organized. We are ready,” said WUSD Superintendent Linda Luna. Luna said once Yolo County got on the state’s COVID-19 watch list, everything changed with another layer added to plan full distance learning. But while WUSD faces challenges before the school year even kicks off,...
    Monday on “Andrea Mitchell Reports,” Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA) said President Donald Trump’s push to tie federal aid to the reopening of schools is akin to “blackmail” that could end up causing more deaths from the coronavirus pandemic. Lee said, “I think the executive actions, first of all, are smoke in mirrors. Come on. There’s no funding in the executive actions, first of all. Secondly, how in the world do you take away from someone’s unemployment compensation $800 a month? People are living on the edge. So Democrats, yes, over two months ago put forth the HEROES Act, ensuring their lives and livelihood. This is a pandemic of enormous proportions, and we put in resources for contact tracing for testing and for care and for referrals isolation if necessary. We put in language with regard to a national plan and a national strategy. You see, that still has not happened.” She...
    It has been seven years since the central air conditioning system worked at the New York City middle school where Lisa Fitzgerald O’Connor teaches. As a new school year approaches amid the coronavirus pandemic, she and her colleagues are threatening not to return unless its repaired. Her classroom has a window air conditioning unit, but she fears the stagnant air will increase the chances that an infected student could spread the virus. “Window units just aren’t going to cut it. We don’t want to stay cool, we just want the air to flow properly,” said O’Connor, a science teacher who has worked at the Patria Mirabal School in Manhattan since 2009. “We are really super stressed out about it.” Schools around the country are facing similar problems as they plan or contemplate reopening this fall, dealing with aging air conditioning, heating and circulation systems that don’t work well or at...
    With the academic year fast approaching, some New York school districts still have not submitted their reopening plans for in-person learning during the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Before reopening, all 749 school districts in New York had to submit their reopening plan that includes guidance on how they plan to handle potential remote learning, testing, and contact tracing for teachers and students. However, as of Monday, Aug. 10, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said that 107 schools have not submitted plans for the state to review, and if they fail to, they will not be permitted to reopen next month. The new deadline has been set for Friday, Aug. 14 for districts to submit and amend plans for reopening.  'How they didn't submit a plan is beyond me," New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said, "If they don't submit a plan by this Friday, they can't open." Schools must...
    HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) – Under pressure to give schools more health guidance about how to safely reopen, Gov. Tom Wolf’s administration said Monday that it will provide recommendations to school districts based on the local rate of transmission of the coronavirus. The Department of Health plans to provide an analysis showing the seven-day rate of transmission in each county and group those rates into three categories: low, moderate and substantial. The department’s recommendation on how to reopen would be based on those categories. So, for areas with a low transmission rate, districts could adopt a partly remote or a full in-person instruction model. For areas with a moderate transmission rate, districts could adopt a partly remote or fully remote instruction model. For areas with a substantial transmission rate, the department would recommend a fully remote instruction model. Most of Pennsylvania’s 500 school districts will be in the moderate category. While...
    NEW YORK (WABC) -- The doors have been opened for New York schools to go back to class, but 107 school districts have yet to submit their reopening plans. If they don't submit by this Friday, Governor Cuomo says can't reopen.Others submitted incomplete plans, the governor said. New York City submitted a supplemental plan last Friday, which is being reviewed.RELATED: Chancellor, mayor say 74% of NYC students will be in school for blended learning"The main arbiter here of whether a school district has an intelligent plan to reopen and whether people have confidence in that district's plan: It's going to be the parents and it's going to be the teachers, and that requires discussion, and that's going to be a dialogue," Cuomo said. "The parents are responsible for the health and safety of the child, and they're not going to send the child if they don't believe the plan makes...
    MinnPost file photo by Corey AndersonBoth the Minneapolis Public Schools district and the Red Lake School District are holding school board races that have attracted enough candidates to trigger a first round of elimination during the Aug. 11 primary election.In the midst of all the confusion and controversy surrounding back-to-school planning in the midst of a pandemic, five districts have managed to land items on the primary ballot.  Both the Minneapolis Public Schools district and the Red Lake School District are holding school board races that have attracted enough candidates to trigger a first round of elimination during the Aug. 11 primary election. Only two candidates, per open seat, are allowed to advance to the general election.  In Minneapolis, five candidates are competing for one open at-large seat. And three candidates are vying for a District 4 seat — which includes downtown, the Isles neighborhoods and Bryn Mawr. The candidates...
    MinnPost photo by Erin HinrichsDistance learning is returning. Gov. Tim Walz’s “Safe Learning Plan” set up a formula with thresholds based on local public health data that schools and districts must meet before deciding to reopen. We know many districts, including Minneapolis Public Schools, plan to begin the year with distance learning based on the rising COVID-19 case count. Joel LuedtkeWhether you greet the announcement with relief, dread or (most likely) a mix of the two, this issue is settled at least for now. Since we know many students will participate in distance learning, let’s shift our focus to this essential question: How can we do distance learning better? It’s not helpful or fair to throw shade on schools and districts for distance learning “Version 1.0.” Minnesota school administrators and teachers had to shift long-established systems of in-person instruction to an online format in a matter of days. Educators skilled...
    Less than a week after Donald Trump claimed children are “almost immune” to COVID-19, we get this sobering news: 97,000 children tested positive for the virus in the last two weeks of July. That’s not near-immunity. As ways to prove that Trump was yet again wrong go, 97,000 kids with coronavirus is really not the best. What was happening in the last two weeks of July? In some places, camps were opening for an abbreviated summer. In other places, schools were starting to reopen. The spike in coronavirus cases in many states was continuing, but so was the move back to something approaching “normal” life. And the result was that one in four diagnoses of children since the pandemic hit the U.S. back in March was crammed into one two-week period.  The report, from the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Children’s Hospital Association, has data from  49 states, New York City, Washington, Puerto Rico, and Guam. Most...
    RIVERSIDE, Calif. (KABC) -- The new school year will start from home Monday for hundreds of Riverside and Chino Valley Unified students.The first day of school will start with distance learning for students in both districts after one of the longest and possibly hardest summer breaks in generations.In Riverside, parents can choose virtual or home-based learning. The virtual option is 100% online learning with live interaction each day. Home-based learning allows the parent or guardian to serve as the instructor. Students will check in for weekly and monthly meetings with their assigned teacher.RELATED: COVID-19 cases among kids increases 40% in 2 weeks, report findsEMBED More News Videos How widespread is COVID-19 in kids? The American Academy of Pediatrics reports a 40% increase in the number of cases in the last two weeks of July. Chino Valley Unified students will also begin virtually. The next phase will allow students to opt...
            by Vivian Jones  Tennessee’s Department of Education has announced $15 million in matching grants to help school districts provide MiFi devices and data coverage for 100,000 student households without internet access. MiFi devices access the internet over the cellular network using a procedure commonly referred to as “tethering.” Funds will go to school districts as a matching grant to provide an estimated 100,000 households with internet access for distance learning amid the coronavirus pandemic. Priority will be given to households most in need. “100,000 households, most of those households have multiple children who will now have internet access,” Education Commissioner Penny Schwinn said during a news conference Thursday. “We think it’s incredibly important, not just to address the pandemic, but frankly for children to have access to that regularly. We’re very excited.” School districts purchasing devices for students will be able to request $150 per...
    SAN ANTONIO – School districts in and around San Antonio are slated to open in the next couple of weeks despite the ongoing surge in coronavirus cases in the area. President of San Antonio Alliance of Teacher and Support Personnel Alejandra Lopez joined Leading SA on Sunday to discuss the reopening plan and how the organization is working with its members. “At the moment, we are a part of a citywide coalition that is calling for the first nine weeks of the full year to be completely online. We feel strongly that while our city is in the red zone, no teachers or support personnel should be working on campus. It’s just really an unnecessary risk for our community at the moment,” Lopez said. Most public districts are set to begin the school year online. Although teachers understand it’s not the same as in-person learning, it’s the best way...
    CHICAGO (WLS) -- While school districts decide between in-person, remote learning or some mix of the two, parents are weighing their options.For some, the uncertainty and fears of COVID-19 have them considering a fourth option: homeschooling.But before you begin trying to teach your children, we're talking to a couple of homeschooling pros about where to start and how to manage being parent and teacher.Newsviews: Homeschooling Part 1EMBED More News Videos While school districts decide between in-person, remote learning or some mix of the two parents are weighing their options. ABC7 Chicago spoke to Erin Lasky, who has homeschooled all six of her children, and Jean Kulczyk with Illinois House a statewide network for people involved in home schooling.Newsviews: Homeschooling Part 2EMBED More News VideosWhile school districts decide between in-person, remote learning or some mix of the two parents are weighing their options. For more information, visit the Illinois State Board...
    In the Pioneer Press, Josh Verges writes: “At least 23 of Minnesota’s largest school districts already have decided where and how instruction will take place to start the school year. Of those, 16 have settled on a model that’s more cautious than Gov. Tim Walz’s long-awaited guidelines advise. Many school districts have been surveying parents and teachers about their concerns and intentions for the start of the school year. Districts may be playing it safe because that’s what their communities say they want, said Deb Henton, executive director of the Minnesota Association of School Administrators.” In the Star Tribune, Maya Rao and Jeffrey Meitrodt write: “Private insurance won’t come close to paying the cost of rebuilding what was lost in the riots following George Floyd’s death. Though Gov. Tim Walz has estimated that total losses will exceed $500 million, insurance companies have informed the Minnesota Department of Commerce that they...
    According to state guidelines, the coronavirus pandemic in and around South Washington County Schools is contained enough to safely bring elementary students back to school full time and secondary students part time. For school board members, however, such a scenario is far too risky. They voted last week to use an instruction model one level safer than state guidelines suggest for the upcoming school year. At least three board members think even that’s too dangerous. They’ll consider voting Thursday to keep every student home at the start of the school year. “I don’t really want to play Russian roulette with children’s and teachers’ lives,” Melinda Dols said Monday. A MORE CAUTIOUS MODEL At least 23 of Minnesota’s largest school districts already have decided where and how instruction will take place to start the school year. Of those, 16 have settled on a model that’s more cautious than Gov. Tim Walz’s...
    By BRENDAN FARRINGTON, Associated Press TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Florida's coronavirus numbers remain high as in-person early voting begins ahead of the state's primary and some school districts prepare to reopen on Monday. Florida reported 187 new coronavirus deaths on Saturday, bringing the state's total to 8,238. That pushes the average number of reported deaths over the last seven days to 156, down from a high of 185. There were more than 8,500 new confirmed coronavirus cases, bringing the state's total to nearly 527,000 cases. The number of people who are hospitalized because of the virus continued to decline. There were 6,836 hospitalizations late Saturday morning compared to 7,174 the day before. Miami-Dade County by far had the most COVID-19 hospital patients with 1,558. The numbers were reported the same day statewide in-person early voting began ahead of Florida's Aug. 18 primary election. Florida has no statewide races on the...
    AUSTIN, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) – Texas Gov. Greg Abbott on Saturday extended the state’s disaster declaration for all counties in response to the COVID-19 threat. According to the governor, the declaration, which was originally issued on March 13, allows the state to be provided with resources to curb the spread of the coronavirus. “A proclamation renewing the declaration stating that the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) poses an imminent threat of disaster for all counties in Texas,” a state document said. The spread of the novel coronavirus continues to affect the state and the nation. The extension of the disaster declaration also comes as school districts in Texas get ready to start their 2020-2021 school years. Many districts will either be starting the school year with virtual learning only or offering in-person and remote learning options for parents and students. “Renewing this Disaster Declaration will provide communities with the resources they need to respond...
    ALBANY, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — It’s the decision many parents, students and teachers have been waiting months for. Gov. Andrew Cuomo says New York schools can reopen for in-person learning next month, but there are some conditions. The infection rate must be below 5%, students must wear masks, and that’s not all. As CBS2’s Marcia Kramer reports, Governor Cuomo might have been channeling a line from the song “New York, New York. If I can make it there, I can make it it anywhere,” when he handed down the edict allowing schools to reopen. “If anybody can open schools, we can open schools,” Cuomo said. The governor, of course, was referring to his success in facing down COVID-19. LINK: See New York City’s Final School Reopening Plan “Let me say it this way. You can look at infection rate. We are probably in the best situation in the country right now,”...
    Young elementary school students and their parents attempt to get the attention of passing motorists on Church Street in Winchester, MA on July 30, 2020. A group of Winchester parents hold an event on the town common, voicing their concerns about younger students being able to learn remotely and advocating for the full return of them to classrooms.Jim Davis | Boston Globe | Getty Images When classes begin on Wednesday, half of freshman at the Adelson Educational Campus will be new to the Jewish values school. With more families looking for face-to-face instruction for fall, the Las Vegas school has seen an uptick in interest, according to Upper School Principal Camille McCue. Despite putting limits on class size to maintain social distancing, enrollment has increased. The local public school district for many Adelson families is the 300,000-student Clark County School District. It is turning to a hybrid model for fall...
    Getty New York Governor Andrew Cuomo says all school districts in the state can reopen for in-person classes in the fall.  The state’s 700 school districts have the “flexibility” to offer both in-person classes, alongside remote learning, and students will be required to wear masks throughout the school day, ABC 7 reports. Citing success in battling the potentially deadly virus in what was once the heart of the pandemic in the U.S, Cuomo said districts still need to address the safety fears of parents and teachers, per The Associated Press.   Read More: New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is leading the vanguard on police reform “Everywhere in the state, every region is below the threshold that we established,” Cuomo told reporters Friday.   “If any state can do this, we can do this,” he said. School districts are allowed to “do in-person school, but it is up to them.”...
    By CASEY SMITH, Associated Press/Report for America INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana's top education official said Thursday that she think schools can safely reopen despite mounting reports of students and staffers testing positive for the coronavirus within days of returning to the classroom in some districts. Jennifer McCormick, the state's school superintendent, said that she thinks it’s best for medical experts to determine if, when or how schools should reopen. “Based on what I have been told, we are good to go — with provisions,” she said during a webinar. The Indiana Department of Education is also leaving it up to health officials to set thresholds for coronavirus positivity rates that would require a school to close, McCormick said. She and other state officials have resisted calls to provide more guidance on how schools should reopen and when they should close down again in the event of an outbreak. McCormick said...