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Coronavirus: Solano public schools unlikely to return to the ‘before times’

in Vacaville CA 76 views
Rebecca Schlafer-Miller a fifth-grade teacher at Edwin Markham Elementary School in Vacaville works with her students via Zoom during distance learning Tuesday. After a year of teaching by video conferencing software either from their homes or empty classrooms, teachers in the Vacaville Unified School District will be welcoming students back to school in the coming days. (Joel Rosenbaum -- The Reporter)

Like most of us, Vacaville area educators, students and families recall the week in March 2020 when their world began to change. A year and some days since, many long for the “before times.”

However, across Solano County and the nation, online education has taken root. As classroom instruction is about to resume in a hybrid model for what’s left of the academic year, local educators hold out hope that students will welcome the change.

In emailed responses to a series of Reporter questions, Ed Santopadre, associate superintendent for Vacaville Unified, noted ways student learning and achievement has been affected by the pandemic and remote learning.

“We are very proud of the work by our students, teachers, administrators and support staff to make sure students had the tools they needed and continue to motivate them to keep trying,” he said. “We have concerns about the academic progress of some students but believe we can work hard to have them catch up for what they missed. Learning is not a straight line and is very individual, so our teams are looking at each student and what supports they need.”

Continue Reading on The Reporter

New coronavirus case records lag as counties halt testing, reporting for New Year

in Vacaville CA 93 views

Coronavirus cases continued to climb across California as public health officials closed down testing sites and halted reporting for New Year’s Day.

Health officials across the state reported 30,711 new coronavirus cases and 179 new deaths for a total of 2,356,569 cases and 26,538 deaths. In the Bay Area, 2,720 new cases were reported and nine new deaths counted as some counties closed down for the new year.

A total of 270,241 cases of the coronavirus have been reported in the Bay Area, and 2,633 people have died from the virus. The most coronavirus deaths were reported in San Francisco on Saturday, with health officials reporting 5 new deaths for a total of 194 deaths. Officials in the city so far have reported 23,900 cases of the virus, 379 new cases were reported Saturday.

In the North Bay — which includes Sonoma, Solano, Marin and Napa counties — officials reported 599 new cases of the coronavirus and four new deaths for a total of 54,334 cases and 462 deaths.

Continue Reading on The Mecury

Orange County’s Year Interrupted By Coronavirus: 2020 Revisited

in Around California 98 views

ORANGE COUNTY, CA — It’s impossible for this editor to reach New Year’s Eve without looking back to see where we’ve been before we look ahead to what’s next. The past 365 days of 2020 were unlike any other: rife with health and safety concerns, discouraging news, and uncertainty in the future.

In the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, we saw lives forever changed, hands out to help others, drive-by birthday and graduation parades, and a new way to support area businesses and restaurants to keep Orange County’s free enterprise system alive.

Student-athletes are yearning for the field while they’re sidelined in the pandemic. On her 16th birthday, Shayna Glass shows her toughness.

Continue Reading on Patch

CMF erects tents to deal with inmate Covid outbreak

in Vacaville CA 108 views

VACAVILLE — The California Medical Facility in Vacaville once again erected tents to help space out the inmate population after a Covid-19 outbreak at the prison.

Lt. Brady Olivias, the public information officer for CMF, said 10 of the 12-man tents were scheduled to be set up Monday.

“Some tents are being set up to spread out our population,” Olivias said. “We had these tents before . . . They were taken down about two months ago.”

Solano County Public Health officials described the tents as a field hospital, but Olivias indicated that is not accurate.

The idea is to spread out the inmate population to better prevent the transmission of the disease. As of Monday, there were 232 inmates with active cases of Covid-19 in the facility. No CMF inmate has died from the disease.

“The well-being and safety of the incarcerated population and staff within CDCR (California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation) and CCHCS (California Correctional Health Care Services) is our top priority,” officials said in a statement issued by the Office of Public and Employee Communications.

Continue Reading on Daily Republic

Coronavirus: Distance learning in place as Vacaville students, teachers begin new year

in News/Vacaville 184 views

For the fifth year in a row, Orchard Elementary School teacher Jaxie Murray greeted her new class of kindergarteners, sang songs with them and had them do activities.

The difference this year is that she had to do all of that through her computer screen.

Vacaville Unified School District students returned Monday for the 2020-21 school year, a traditional rite of passage that serves as a new start for students each year. This year took that concept to another level. Because of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, Vacaville campuses remain closed for the time being, but students continue to attend classes through distance learning. By order of Gov. Gavin Newsom, schools in counties on the state’s watchlist for COVID-19 cases must start the year with distance learning and remain in the model until the county has been off the watchlist for 14 consecutive days.

Solano County is on the state’s watchlist, so VUSD students began the year by logging onto Zoom and receiving instruction from their teachers.

Murray said she was nervous leading up to the start of the year, but after meeting with her students and their parents, she felt more confident.

“It’s definitely a learning curve for everyone,” she said. “I feel very fortunate because leading up to today, I’ve had contact with a lot of my parents through email, and they’ve all been really positive in their messages back and forth…I feel like I’m in a good place with the families.”

Continue Reading on Thereporter.com

Coronavirus: Communal outdoor dining comes to Dixon

in News 239 views
Joel Rosenbaum — The Reporter

It is no secret that restaurants have been struggling in the age of the coronavirus. Those that have survived are getting by with takeout or delivery models and with the California government extending its stay-at-home order to allow outdoor dining at restaurants, this has become another way for businesses to attract customers.

In many instances, this has meant changing city code to extend outdoor dining areas to parking space, courtyards or parks. For Dixon, this has meant establishing a communal space for patrons of different restaurants to eat and drink.

Dawson’s Bar & Grill, with support from the city and Downtown Dixon Business Association (DDBA), recently set up an outdoor eating area on the city-owned Ferguson Alley off West A Street for patrons to enjoy the takeout they ordered from Dawson’s and other downtown restaurants in a shaded space that allows for outdoor dining and social distancing.

Jill Orr, the owner of Dawson’s and president of DDBA’s Board of Directors, said the goal was to provide more outdoor seating.

Continue Reading on Thereporter.com

How Solano County is approaching private gatherings differently

in News/Solano County 323 views

SOLANO COUNTY, Calif. — In several counties across the Sacramento region, private gatherings are being blamed for the recent rise in coronavirus cases.

However, Solano County Public Health Director Dr. Bela Matyas said his department recognizes that it is not healthy to tell people to avoid their friends and family.

“Honestly, it’s not a really good message,” Matyas said. “It’s not a message that really tends to work for anyone.”

Continue Reading on abc10

Coronavirus: Solano health officer says spike largely due to family gatherings

in News/Solano County 347 views

Coronavirus cases continue to rise in Solano, which Dr. Bela Matyas — the county’s public health officer — attributes primarily to family get-togethers where people are not practicing social distancing.

On Friday, the number of coronavirus cases since the outbreak began surpassed 2,000. As of Tuesday, 2,313 cases had been reported, marking a continuing spike in cases over the last month.

Fairfield has since surpassed Vallejo as the city with the most cases — 798 to 768 respectively — with Vacaville following at 371 overall cases, Suisun City at 173, Dixon at 127, Benicia at 45 and Rio Vista at 23.

The unincorporated areas of Solano County remain the only collective region to have fewer than 10 cases, a figure that is too small for the county to report.

Additionally, the county has 301 active cases and has had 31 deaths. The deaths have largely been in the 65-and-older group with 84 percent of the data, while 10 percent of the deaths have been in the 50-64 demographic, and 6 percent in the 18-49 demographic.

Matyas advised that, based on case investigations, the spike was largely due to people getting together with friends and family and not social distancing.

“It’s family and social gatherings,” he said Tuesday. “They have been continuing unabated (and) probably have been for a couple months now.”

Continue Reading on timesheraldonline.com

Churches, Gyms, Malls And Salons Ordered To Close Again In 30 California Counties, Including Sacramento

in News 332 views

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — With California leaders seeing a concerning increase in coronavirus hospitalizations, the state has hit the “dimmer switch” on reopening.

On Monday, Gov. Gavin Newsom announced a big step back and ordered the closure of bars, indoor dining, and other activities across the state.

At the same time, Newsom also noted that 30 counties were now on the state’s coronavirus watch list. Counties are being placed on that list as their COVID-19 infection rate exceeds a certain level, among other factors.

Continue Reading on CBS13 CBS Sacramento

2 Vacaville City Hall Employees Test Positive For Coronavirus

in News/Vacaville 311 views

VACAVILLE, CA — The city of Vacaville said Thursday that public counters at City Hall are closed to walk-in traffic until further notice after two city employees reported testing positive for the coronavirus.

The first employee reported their positive COVID-19 test to the city late ‪Wednesday afternoon, while the second employee, from a different department, reported the positive test result ‪Thursday morning‬, city officials said.

Neither employee showed any symptoms while working at City Hall and the two cases seem to be unrelated, the city said Thursday afternoon in a statement posted to Facebook.

Continue Reading on Patch

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