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About this blog: I am a native of Alameda County, grew up in Pleasanton and currently live in the house I grew up in that is more than 100 years old. I spent 39 years in the daily newspaper business and wrote a column for more than 25 years in add...  (More)

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Pleasanton trustees take the right action

Uploaded: Feb 2, 2021

Kudos to the Pleasanton school trustees for pushing to get back to in-person instruction for students.

The district has been providing in-person instruction for small groups of students who need extra help since the fall. Getting the rest of the students back in the classroom, particularly the elementary students, is critical. The planned program will be a hybrid of in-person and remote instruction on alternating days.

Trustees decided against the staff recommendation to limit in-person instruction to younger students and voted instead to move ahead with a staged re-opening once the infection rate in the county moves down to the red level for two weeks. It’s currently at the purple level.

Parents of students at all levels will have the option of remote learning so this option gives parents that choice, but, more importantly, gives the in-person option.

Looking statewide, Gov. Newsom’s effort to get students back in the classroom has gone nowhere. The California Teachers Association carries lots of clout in Sacramento and wrote a letter to Newsom objecting to his plan last week and arguing that teachers should be vaccinated before reopening classes. The plan had been heavily criticized from a variety of stakeholders. The vaccination demand would push reopening into the fall.

Frustrated parents of student athletes filed legal action against Newsom’s shutdown that has closed high school sports for nearly a year. Other states, in stark contrast to California, have offered both in-person instruction and sports throughout the school year. California, despite aggressive shutdowns by the governor and local public health officials, has shown miserable results when it comes to stemming infections despite the huge economic, mental health and educational costs.

Thanks to the generosity of the NorCal mini car club, Hope Hospice patients now have access to

animatronic pets. The Joy for All Companion Pets by Ageless Innovation are robotic dog and cat toys that are designed specifically to help lessen the impact that pandemic-related isolation has had on its patients. The agency purchased 20 cats to support its clients with funds from the car club. Because of COVID-19, the pets are a gift.
The pandemic has limited human contact, particularly family members, for patients. Hope Hospice staffers provide end-of-life care and palliative care.
"No one expected quarantine orders to have carried on this long," said Nikki Tildesley, Manager of Volunteer Services at Hope Hospice in a press release. "But here we are, nearly a year into this pandemic, and our patients continue to go without the benefit of face-to-face companionship visits from our volunteers, and in many cases, even the patient’s own family. They are truly suffering."
It’s good to see an innovative company that has a comfort tool to serve patients in these trying times.

What is it worth to you?


Posted by Dirk Svensen, a resident of Country Fair,
on Feb 2, 2021 at 11:57 am

Dirk Svensen is a registered user.

How are the private schools (K-12) handling this? If they are continuing with in-person teaching - using reasonable safety measures - how many teachers have had serious illnesses or have died?

Posted by Mr. Julius, a resident of Downtown,
on Feb 3, 2021 at 10:18 am

Mr. Julius is a registered user.

My understanding is that children rarely get the infection, rarely have severe outcomes, and aren't typically carriers. Likewise, I've read reports (Las Vegas school system) and heard from first-hand hospital reports that there has been a huge jump in suicide attempts among young people.

If true, teachers dragging their feet seems irresponsible. I get the bonus of no commuting, and zero physical threats (what many urban teachers experience). I've heard that one teacher relocated to empty Tahoe for Zoom calls & skiing.

Sweden's schools never closed down. Children are strong and build immunity.

Posted by Doc, a resident of Pleasanton Meadows,
on Feb 10, 2021 at 11:47 am

Doc is a registered user.

Just open the schools already. The kids are literally Zoomed out. We do school on Zoom. We do scouts on Zoom. We do church on Zoom. We do conferences on Zoom. Enough with distance learning and Zoom. My kids need to go back to school to learn and to run around and be with other kids. Our Federal, State, and local all promise to follow the science...well the science says to open the schools. Enough with the BS. Enough with the teacher's unions. Enough with the finger pointing about teachers being essential or non-essential. Shot or no shot it is time to put kids first for a change and open the damn schools.

You're welcome.

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