March 12, 2021
No More Rainy Day Schedule at Secondary Schools
We have been working in concert with the middle and high school principals to develop procedures at each secondary school to accommodate students during lunch in the event of rain. As a result of this effort, we will not need to have a minimum day at secondary sites when rain is in the forecast. Part of the mitigation plan was to use a variety of outdoor covered spaces on campuses. We also purchased over 60 portable canopies to shelter groups of students from the rain while they eat lunch. While we have a number of accommodations in place now to account for the rain, we will continue to ensure that students are not allowed to eat inside classrooms or buildings. This new adjustment will also ensure that virtual and classic students are able to maximize instructional time each day. We would like to thank all secondary parents and students for your patience as we work to continually improve our systems in response to the pandemic.
We are in the process of developing procedures to eliminate the need for minimum days at the elementary schools as well. We anticipate that our elementary schools will be ready in the next week or two. We will send out a notification once our procedures are finalized.
Health and Safety Update
This week’s reported COVID-19 numbers have continued the downward trend we have seen in recent weeks. The adjusted average daily new cases per 100,000 residents is 8.8. The percent positivity for San Diego County is 3.3% with the 6-zip percentage trailing at 6.7%. Although the county is still in the Purple Tier, we are anticipating that if this downward trend continues, San Diego County could be reassigned to the Red Tier by the end of March.
Vaccines in San Diego County
San Diego County is well on its way to vaccinating the public with more than 1.27 million COVID-19 vaccine doses delivered to the region. It was announced this week that 25.2% of the county has received one dose of the vaccine, and 14.4% have received the second vaccine dose. The county is on its way to reaching the goal of 70% of the community vaccinated by July 1, 2021. Vista teachers and staff have been successful scheduling appointments for vaccinations. We are excited to get all staff who want a vaccination through this important step in combating the pandemic.
CDPH Releases New Guidelines in Response to Lawsuit Over Youth Sports
Lawyers representing a group of high school athletes and the California Department of Health have reached a settlement agreement that has allowed all youth sports to resume in California in counties with an average daily new case rate of less than 14 cases per 100,000 residents. San Diego County is currently below that threshold.
New guidance that was developed by the CDPH in response to the settlement was released late last week. The California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) and our local San Diego Section of CIF reviewed the guidelines and provided guidance for member schools and school districts early this week. Nothing in the new guidelines changed procedures for sports that were already competing such as cross country, swim, and field hockey. For teams that were not previously allowed to compete, the updated CDPH youth sports guidance allowed or will allow a return to competition if the team adheres to the stricter requirements in place for college teams, which includes rigorous testing requirements around each competition, following contact tracing protocols, and coordination with local health authorities.
Student-athletes in cross country, swim, golf, football, tennis, field hockey, and volleyball have already participated in competitions with other local schools. All other sports in Vista Unified have begun practice (or will soon) and will be participating in interscholastic competitions within the next few weeks.
LCAP Community Forums
Every school district in the state of California is required to develop a Local Control Accountability Plan (LCAP) to outline the actions and services that will support student academic, social, and behavioral achievement. We call our LCAP the Blueprint for Educational Excellence and Innovation. The LCAP must go through an annual revision process to ensure that students, parents, teachers, and staff members have the opportunity to provide feedback on the current actions and services and to make suggestions for additional actions and services that students need to reach their full potential as learners. We are offering two LCAP community forums to gather feedback during the month of March. Please join one of the webinars below to engage in our annual LCAP revision process.
Matt Doyle, Ed.D.
Superintendent of Schools
Vista Unified School District