Debates over the reopening of schools in the Golden State continue to rage as parents, teachers, and administrators cannot seem to get on the same page. The latest news from the state’s office is a hard push to jump-start the reopening process for in-person learning. Specifically, California will save 10% of its vaccine supply for teachers starting March 1. In addition, school staff and childcare providers will also have access to that saved vaccine supply.
Governor Newsom asserts that the state can do so because officials know more doses are on the way. He spoke on that fact, “The reason we can this more formally now, even though we have allowed for it over the course of the last number of weeks is because of more vaccinations that we know are now coming from the Biden administration.”
Vaccine Reinforcements on the Way
Newsom stated that the state is expecting 1.4 million vaccines this week and 1.5 million next week. This news is reassuring, even as California endures its own vaccination struggles. Thus far, 5.5 million people have received their first shot, and just over 2 million have received their second. That amounts to 7.6 million total administered vaccines. Ultimately this leaves approximately 33 million Californians still waiting for their vaccine.
LA Case Numbers Plummet
In addition to the vaccine reinforcements, the case numbers in Los Angeles also spell good news. Recently, Los Angeles County health officials reported very encouraging numbers. 21 deaths and 943 new cases were tallied on Monday, February 22nd, which represents the lowest numbers in months. These low numbers should inspire hope for all, even considering that Monday tallies are frequently low because of weekend reporting delays.
LA County currently has 2,213 people hospitalized with COVID-19. That number is a far cry from the 8,000+ hospitalizations in early January. On top of that, the daily positivity rate has dropped below 5% — the lowest rate since October 2020.
County Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer noted that the seven-day average has dropped considerably, down to 1,600 a day. That figure represents a 90% decrease from its 15,000 person peak on January 8th.
“This wasn’t a miracle, and the significant drop in our case numbers reflects actions and choices taken by millions of residents, workers, and employers.”-LA County Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer
She did, however, caution that case numbers could pick back up again in the coming weeks, as a result of gatherings that occurred during the Super Bowl and President’s Day weekends.
The Return of Outdoor Sports
Governor Newsom’s effort to welcome children back to school hasn’t stopped there, however. He recently announced loosened guidelines for outdoor youth sports. As a result, all outdoor sports are allowed to resume in counties with COVID-19 case rates at or below 14 cases per 100,000 residents. That new regulation goes into effect this Friday, February 26th.
Hopefully, the vaccine deliveries to California do not run into any more snags and the hard-working teachers of our state can receive their vaccines without further delay. Fingers crossed!
What do you think about Governor Newsom’s 10% announcement? Is it good? Bad? Somewhere in the middle? We’d like to hear from you! Let us know what you think in the comments below: