Week in Review > Week in Review 09-17-2021Posted by Buckeye Association of School Administrators on September 17th, 2021
Although Ohio’s trend of rising daily COVID-19 cases showed no sign of stopping Friday, Gov. Mike DeWine, though a vocal supporter of vaccination, said he’s not on board with President Joe Biden’s proposal to use Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regulations to mandate vaccinations at larger businesses.
Dozens of House members signed on to a letter urging Attorney General Dave Yost to pursue “every legal recourse” to block the Biden administration’s plan to use OSHA authority to require vaccination or regular COVID testing at larger businesses. On social media, Rep. Kyle Koehler (R-Springfield) said his office delivered the letter Friday to Yost with 50 representatives’ signatures. They include GOP caucus leaders such as Speaker Pro Tem Tim Ginter (R-Salem), Majority Floor Leader Bill Seitz (R-Cincinnati), Assistant Majority Floor Leader Rick Carfagna (R-Westerville), Majority Whip Don Jones (R-Freeport) and Assistant Whip Cindy Abrams (R-Harrison). Koehler’s post on Facebook said additional House members indicated they were writing their own letters.
Ohio’s six children’s hospitals and many of the state’s adult hospitals are overwhelmed with COVID-19 patients, and that’s largely because roughly half of Ohio’s school districts aren’t requiring masks, Gov. Mike DeWine and leaders from the Ohio Children’s Hospital Association (OCHA) said Tuesday. “The data are now clear that there is a higher level of COVID-19 in school districts where masks are not required,” DeWine said during the Zoom press conference. “If we want our schools to stay open, the best way to do that is for those 12 and over to get vaccinated. But because those under 12 are still too young to be vaccinated, we need students who come in to school to wear a mask until we get through this.” DeWine was joined by OCHA President and CEO Nick Lashutka, Dayton Children’s Hospital President and CEO Debbie Feldman, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Chief of Staff Dr. Patty Manning, Nationwide Children’s Hospital Chief Medical Officer Dr. Rustin Morse and ProMedica Russell J. Ebeid Children’s Hospital Chief Nursing Officer Paula Grieb.
In his latest briefing with hospital officials on Thursday, Sept. 16, Ohio Department of Health (ODH) Director Bruce Vanderhoff warned that the state is becoming “worrisomely close” to making decisions on prioritizing care, a task they never want to have to perform. “Hospitals are being stretched toward capacity,” he said, adding that is both because of “high numbers” of COVID-19 hospitalizations and staffing challenges. “… Hospitals are having to make difficult decisions and implement plans that alleviate that pressure on their systems and their staff.” Vanderhoff said those plans have included rescheduling elective procedures, diverting patients to other hospitals and implementing patient visitation policies. Some hospitals have even temporarily reached full capacity.
The State Board of Education (SBOE) was mostly within its rights to order reviews and training related to racism and implicit bias but lacks authority to extend that to all contractors working for the Ohio Department of Education (ODE), Attorney General Dave Yost’s office wrote in a formal opinion to the board Tuesday. He cautioned that those reviews and the content of the training could end up getting the board in trouble.
ODE announced recently that 68 schools will be honored with the Purple Star Award this school year. The award recognizes a school’s commitment to serving and supporting students and families connected to the U.S. armed forces and Ohio National Guard. A full list of honorees can be found at https://tinyurl.com/tkxmprk3.
Half of lower income or Hispanic parents and 39 percent of all parents reported at least one of their children fell behind academically as a result of the pandemic, with online learning associated with even greater issues, according to recent results from the Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) Vaccine Monitor poll. More than a third of parents said a child fell behind in social-emotional development, and 29 percent reported mental health or behavioral problems in their child.
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