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Clovis Unified didn’t waste any time in announcing changes in COVID-19 contact tracing and quarantining for students. The district notified parents Thursday — the same day the Fresno County Department of Public Health issued new guidelines — that contact tracing for students who are close contacts to a positive case would be discontinued, as would the quarantining of siblings who have a positive case in their household but are symptom free.
In addition, schools would no longer be sending out letters when classroom exposures occur, the district announced.
Student testing for co-curricular activities is being discontinued in Fresno County, although students who travel to areas outside the county where it is still a requirement will have to follow the rules in those areas to participate.
But testing of students who return to school prior to Day 11 after testing positive will continue, and their family members will be expected to monitor themselves for symptoms.
The rule changes went into effect Friday.
There is no rule change yet for masks, which are still required for students in grades K-12 and for staff when students are present.
Also in School Zone:
- Teachers union makes endorsements, and another candidate emerges for Fresno County Superintendent of Schools.
- She’s a “Guardian of the Galaxy,” and she’s coming to Fresno.
- Fresno Unified Scholarship Fund is seeking applicants.
Teachers Union Backs Candidates
Two candidates for the Fresno Unified School Board say they’ve been endorsed by the Fresno Teachers Association.
Andy Levine, one of four candidates in the April 12 special election to fill the Fresno High Area 5 seat, and Susan Wittrup, a challenger in the Bullard High Area 7 election in November, say the FTA has endorsed them.
The FTA did not respond to a query this week from GV Wire on those or other endorsements.
Meanwhile, the number of candidates to replace Fresno County Superintendent of Schools Jim Yovino has grown. Dr. Daren Miller, a Madera Unified educator, has filed campaign finance paperwork for the post. Miller had been appointed to the Fresno County School Board Area 3 seat to replace Nelson Esparza after Esparza won election to the Fresno City Council, but then lost in the 2020 election to James Martinez.
The other candidates are Dr. Michele Cantwell-Copher, administrator for the Educational Leadership and Development Division in the Office of the Fresno County Superintendent of Schools, and Eliseo Gamino, who ran against Yovino in the 2018 election. Gamino, a Raisin City Elementary teacher, is a member of the Firebaugh-Las Deltas School Board.
Yovino announced in January that he would not seek reelection to the post he has held since 2014.
Mars Mission Scientist Is Keeping The Red Planet Safe
Dr. Moogega Cooper, the plantary protection lead of the 2020 Mars mission, is coming to Fresno City College on Wednesday, Feb. 23 as part of the Speakers Forum series and Black History Month.
Cooper, who Fresno City is somewhat playfully describing as a real “Guardian of the Galaxy,” is working with NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory to determine whether Mars might be suitable for human habitation, and making sure earthlings don’t harm what’s already there.
She will speak from noon to 1 p.m. Wednesday in the Old Administration Building auditorium. Admission and parking are free. For those who can’t rocket their way into the OAB, her speech also will be broadcast via Zoom.
No word on whether Cooper will bring along a cassette mixtape of ’70s classic hits.
Attention: Fresno Unified Scholars
College-bound Fresno Unified students could get a little help with paying for their post-secondary education from the Fresno Unified Scholarship Fund, but they’ll need to move fast. The deadline to apply is March 1.
The district awarded $165,000 in scholarships to 76 seniors last spring.
Students will need to submit a completed application, their transcript, and letters of recommendation.
Questions? Contact the Department of College and Career Readiness at (559) 248-7465 or email FUSDscholarship@fresnounified.org.
The Scholarship Fund also welcomes any and all contributions to the fund, which is administered through the Central Valley Community Foundation. Fresno Unified employees may contribute through payroll deductions.
The public or employees may make donations online through PayPay or a debit or credit card at the foundation, or by mailing a check payable to the Central Valley Foundation with FUSD Scholarship Fund on the memo line. Mail the checks to: Central Valley Community Foundation, 5260 N. Palm Ave., Suite 122, Fresno, CA 93704.