Manteca Unified schools are not closed.
It’s more of a case of students not being on campus to learn.
That distinction is driving how the school year unfolds when the new school year starts in 13 days on Aug. 6.
“The county health department did not shut down schools,” District Superintendent Clark Burke said. “They have prohibited students from being on campus to learn.”
That means teachers and support staff will be at schools. It means students are highly likely to be required either in one-on-one situations or in small groups for testing from time-to-time. Testing and any other in person appearance needed to access learning resources will take place in classrooms compliant with COVID-19 sanitation procedures as well as all appropriate protocols and social distancing.
The entire school year has been structured so students can seamlessly transaction from Phase 1 remote learning to Phase 2 blended learning with 50 percent on campus and 50 percent off campus to Phase 3 with full-time modified on-campus learning.
Burke noted the transition to classroom learning will be made when it is deemed safe to do so by county health officials monitoring COVID-19. At the same time if after the district has moved into blended learning or into a more traditional full-time on-campus situation and COVID-19 conditions regress, students can be moved back into a blended or remote learning situation without disrupting where they are in studies designed to teach the adopted curriculum.
The game plan is a nod to both the need to provide students with in-person learning as well as to address health concerns of students and staff. The ability to be fluid is driven by the goal to do what is best for the students while understanding pandemics historically can unfold as a rollercoaster ride over the course of two or more years.
How the school year differs substantially from what happened in the spring starts out of the gate.
Students will start school at the same time whether the phase is remote learning, blended learning, or modified fulltime learning.
For high school students it means school will start regardless of the physical format at 9 a.m. They will retain the same class schedule throughout the day. As an example, if English is their first period then it will always be their first period.
The later 9 a.m. start time reflects the implementation of a state mandate to push back the start time for older students that was put in place by the California Legislature based on research that indicated teens learn better with later start times. High school will end at 3:30 p.m.
Elementary schools, depending on the campus a student attends, will start between 8 and 8:30 a.m. and end at between 2:30 and 3 p.m.
Teachers will be on campus in their respective classrooms conducting class even when the district is in the remote learning phase.
The structured school day regardless whether it is when remote learning is queued up or taking place in the classroom will provide a routine that families as well as the community will be able to count on.
That means parents will know when child care is needed.
As far as that is concerned, Manteca Unified has been working with the City of Manteca, Give Every Child a Chance, and the City of Lathrop to provide child care options. The City of Manteca and GECAC will offer on-campus programs with social distancing. Lathrop is offering an expanded after school program at the Lathrop Community Center that can accommodate 50 youth under social distancing rules. If they go beyond that space will be made available at nearby Lathrop Elementary School.
107 deaths in SJ
County from COVID-19
As of 1:40 p.m. Thursday, there are 6,187 people within the county that are positive for the virus. Many of the 6,187 plus others who have the virus but haven’t been tested to detect it have no symptoms and may never get ill but are all considered capable of transmitting COVID-19 to those that are vulnerable. That is why the state has mandated that seemingly healthy people need to wear face masks when required as well as social distance and wash hands to reduce the virus’ spread.
There have been 3,639 people that have recovered bringing the overall case number to 9,826 since March out of 760,000 county residents.
The San Joaquin County death count is up to 107. That reflects a 1.1 percent fatality rate among those that become ill due to COVID-19.
The number of people with serious COVID-19 issues requiring hospitalization has eased somewhat. There are 70 COVID-19 patients in ICU out of 232 coronavirus patients.
Countywide there are 123 ICU beds in use by all patients. That is 124 percent above licensed capacity meaning 25 regular hospital beds have been converted into ICU beds.
Manteca’s two hospitals continue to be the least impacted from COVID-19 in San Joaquin County. As of Thursday Doctors Hospital of Manteca had 2 ICU COVID-19 patients out of 12 overall hospitalized for the coronavirus. Between all patients 55 of the hospital’s 73 beds are in use.
Kaiser Foundation Hospital Manteca has 13 COVID-19 patients with 4 in ICU.
As of Tuesday there were 4,014 cases of COVID-19 in Stockton up from 3,487 a week prior. In the past week Lodi has gone from 659 to 750 cases, Manteca from 643 to 729, Tracy from 557 to 619, Lathrop from 188 to 215, Ripon from 75 to 84, and Escalon from 52 to 55. The county reports never indicate how many in each city has recovered or how many are currently positive but instead lumps them all into one number.
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