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Private schools offering different learning models

in Education

Turlock’s private schools are adjusting to the start of a new school year during the pandemic.

Sacred Heart School began its first day of school with distance learning on Monday, while Turlock Christian has pushed their opening date to Sept. 8 with plans to welcome students back onto campus in small learning “pods.”

Turlock’s private catholic school’s first day of distance learning was a “success,” Sacred Heart shared on social media, with parents sharing photos in the comment section of their children attending class virtually — in uniform, of course.

Sacred Heart has submitted its waiver application and reopening plan to public health for approval, but waivers to reopen elementary schools will not be accepted until the COVID-19 transmission rate in Stanislaus County falls to an acceptable level.

“We pray we will be with our students in person soon,” Sacred Heart shared with parents and students on Facebook. “Until then, we will remain strong from a distance!”

Continue Reading on Turlock Journal

Here’s what will be required of Stanislaus County schools in order to re-open campuses

in Education

School districts in Stanislaus County have a lot of work to do before any reopen elementary schools for classroom instruction during the coronavirus pandemic.

First, an adjusted rate of infection in the county has to fall to a level where districts are eligible for waivers to reopen elementary schools for kindergarten to sixth grade students while the county remains on the state’s COVID-19 watch list.

And the numbers have not reached that level yet. Though they are falling.

The county’s rate dropped from 272 per 100,000 population to 244.5 per 100,000, as of Monday. The California Department of Public Health says the waivers to reopen elementary schools can be considered when the infection rate is 200 per 100,000 or lower.

Continue Reading on The Modesto Bee

City to provide weekday distance learning camp

in Education

The City of Turlock is presenting an option for parents who may have trouble juggling distance learning and their jobs this fall with a weekday camp that will mimic a school day.

Enrollment begins at 8 a.m. Wednesday for the Parks, Recreation and Public Facilities Department’s Distance Learning Camp, which will provide both educational support as well as games and activities for elementary school students. According to the department’s Director Allison Van Guilder, the City is offering the camp in accordance with all state, county and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines in order to provide a safe place for children to be while their parents or guardians are at work.

Turlock students will not return to school campuses immediately for the 2020-2021 academic year on Aug. 12, but will be learning from home until it is safe to return amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Continue Reading on Turlock Journal

‘A little piece of normal.’ What you can still do through the Stanislaus County library

in Education

This time last year, librarian Amber O’Brien-Verhulst was popping Mentos into diet cola to demonstrate the kid-favorite, explosive scientific reaction to a captivated audience on the lawn of the Stanislaus County Library Modesto Branch.

This year, the pandemic halted in-person activities, but it hasn’t stopped the library from providing access to their services, books or other materials, though they’re mostly virtual.

“Our buildings are closed, but we are here,” said Sarah Dentan, County Librarian.

She said when the coronavirus hit, the library staff quickly pivoted their activities and services to online.

Continue Reading on The Modesto Bee

Turlock private schools hoping to reopen in person

in Education

Despite Gov. Gavin Newsom’s announcement last week that shut down any plans to reopen campuses in Stanislaus County, two private schools in Turlock are hoping they’ll be exempt from the edict when it’s time for students to return to class next month.

Newsom on Friday forbade schools — both private and public — located in counties on the state’s coronavirus watchlist from holding in-person classes until it’s deemed safe to do so. Stanislaus County has been on the list as a COVID-19 hotspot since mid-June, with cases on the rise in the region and ICU beds in local hospitals full.

Prior to Newsom’s announcement, Turlock Christian Schools (TK-12) and Sacred Heart Catholic School (TK-8) had intended on moving forward with their individual plans to reopen with stringent health guidelines in place. Now, both private schools are exploring options and looking at data in order to still do so.

Continue Reading on Turlock Journal

Back to distance learning for Stanislaus County schools

in Education

Although local schools had hoped to see students in the classroom come August, Stanislaus County announced on Monday that districts would need to begin the academic year with distance learning as coronavirus cases spike in the area.

In a joint release sent out late Monday afternoon, Stanislaus County Public Health Officer Dr. Julie Vaishampayan and Superintendent of Schools Scott Kuykendall said that three determinations had been made earlier in the day: schools should open in August with Distance Learning Models in place, all conditioning for fall sports is suspended until further notice and all extracurricular activities (like band, sports and theater) are suspended as well.

“We recognize the significant impact school closures have on our entire community, students, families and staff. SCOE and all 25 school districts will continue to work diligently and collaboratively towards a prompt and safe reopening of schools in Stanislaus County when health conditions allow,” the release said.

Continue Reading on Turlock Journal

Turlock USD To Close Schools Thursday, Meals Will Be Provided To Kids

in Education/Food

TURLOCK (CBS13)- It’s an uncommon sight during the coronavirus pandemic:  Turlock schools staying open with students still in class while millions across the state aren’t.

The district’s superintendent sent a letter to parents stating with two-thirds of its students rely on school meals and parents who don’t have options for child care, schools would stay open until Thursday giving parents time to figure out their plans.

Continue Reading on CBS Sacramento

Stanislaus County opens ‘books for keeps’ library in lobby of Hackett Road facility

in Education/People

Two-year-old Aiden Jones from Turlock wasn’t interested in the county leaders’ speeches at The Book Club Opening Day on Wednesday.

Instead, he was enthralled with all the books in the new children’s library in the lobby of the Stanislaus County Health Services Agency on Hackett Road.

The goal of the library is to put a book in the hands of every child who visits county facilities. Parents and caregivers can read the books to their children while waiting for an appointment, and then they may take the books home.

Continue Reading on Modesto Bee

Mental Health Training For Student Leaders

in Education/Health

The Stanislaus County Office of Education (SCOE), in partnership with the California Department of Education, NAMI California and NAMI Stanislaus will host a National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) High School Training for student leaders and club advisers on Thursday, March 5 at the Martin G. Petersen Event Center, 720 12th St., Modesto. During the all-day event, students and staff will learn the ins-and-outs of running a successful school club. NAMI on Campus High School Clubs are student-led clubs that promote mental health awareness and reduce the stigma of mental illness through engaging activities and educational events, including resource and activity fairs. Students and advisers from the following high schools are slated to participate: Patterson, Oakdale, Ceres, Central Valley, Hughson, Modesto, Gregori and Turlock.

“As a high school junior, I have noticed a high prevalence of stress, anxiety, and depression among my peers,” said Avni Parmar, a junior at Gregori High School. “Unfortunately, mental health is not an easy topic to discuss. NAMI on Campus is particularly crucial because receiving such wellness help and resources directly from peers will be better accepted by students. I hope to further raise awareness to a larger scale to students at all of our district and county schools.”

Continue Reading on Oakdale Leader

March library events feature animals, both prehistoric and modern

in Animals/Education

While Turlock Library will only be open for a couple of weeks in March before closing down for the start of renovations, there are still many activities for readers of all ages to participate in this month.

The Turlock Library Book Club will meet at 10:30 a.m. March 4. This month's selection is “The Husband's Secret,” by Liane Moriarty. Discovering a tattered letter that says she is to open it only in the event of her husband's death, Cecelia, a successful family woman, is unable to resist reading the letter and discovers a secret that shatters her life and the lives of two other women.

Children can come into the library between 3 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. March 4 and read to a four-legged furry friend. This program gives children a relaxed, non-judgmental atmosphere in which to practice reading aloud to a certified therapy dog for 15 minutes. No sign-ups necessary. First come, first served.

Continue Reading on Turlock Journal

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