Florida health directors reportedly told not to say whether schools should reopen

County health directors in Florida have reportedly been told not to provide a recommendation about whether schools should reopen during the coronavirus pandemic.

Florida state officials “instructed county directors to focus their advice to school boards on how best to reopen,” but the health directors have been told “not to make a recommendation” about whether to actually reopen at all, The Palm Beach Post reports. This is despite the fact that an edict from Florida Education Commission Richard Corcoran instructed schools seeking to not reopen to receive a wavier from health officials.

“We’ve been advised that our role here is to just advise as to what can we do to make the environment in schools as safe as possible with COVID-19,” one health director, Patricia Boswell, reportedly said at a school board meeting. “It is not to make a decision on whether or not to open the school.”

Former health

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Health directors told to keep quiet as Florida leaders pressed to reopen classrooms

PALM BEACH, Fla. – As Gov. Ron DeSantis pushed this summer for schools to reopen, state leaders told school boards they would need Health Department approval if they wanted to keep classrooms closed.

Then they instructed health directors not to give it.

Following a directive from DeSantis’ administration, county health directors across Florida refused to give school boards advice about one of the most wrenching public health decisions in modern history: whether to reopen schools in a worsening pandemic, a Gannett USA TODAY NETWORK review found.

In county after county the health directors’ refrain to school leaders was the same: Their role was to provide information, not recommendations.

They could not tell school boards whether they believed the risks of opening campuses were too great, they said. They could only provide suggestions on how to reopen safely.

“I don’t think any of us are in a position to balk the

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Biden won’t go to Milwaukee for convention; Chicago schools to start online; Florida surpasses 500,000 cases

Another pharmaceutical giant announced a vaccine deal with the U.S. on Wednesday while Joe Biden and the rest of the Democratic celebs bid adieu to Milwaukee’s political convention before the coronation train ever rolled into town.

Johnson & Johnson said it has a $1 billion agreement to supply 100 million doses of its vaccine candidate to the U.S. government. Also Wednesday, Moderna said it expects to fully enroll 30,000 people for a trial of its vaccine candidate next month. And a day earlier, Novavax released promising results of an early trial. 

Milwaukee’s 2020 Democratic National Convention suffers the same fate as Charlotte, where plans for a full-blown GOP convention have been whittled down to a few small gatherings later this month.

While the nation waits for a vaccine that could fully reopen schools and businesses, the University of Connecticut became the first top-level college program to cancel its football season.

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Isaias has become a Category 1 hurricane as it heads toward Bahamas and South Florida

A midnight update from the National Hurricane Center upgraded Tropical Storm Isaias to a Category 1 hurricane a day before earlier predictions called for, while it continued on track toward the Bahamas and South Florida.

The late-night update showed Hurricane Isaias had lost some forward speed but grown more powerful, with 80 mph winds, shortly after passing through Hispaniola..

The center of Isaias is forecast to move near or over the Southeastern Bahamas late Thursday night, then move near or over the Northwestern Bahamas and near South Florida on Saturday.

The storm has already crossed the mountains of Hispaniola while flooding roads and homes in Puerto Rico and blowing roofs away in Haiti.

The tropical storm watch is in effect from Ocean Reef northward to Sebastian Inlet, Florida, Thursday afternoon.

Miami-Dade County also announced that all facilities operated by the Miami-Dade County Parks, Recreation and Open Spaces Department, including beaches

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Tropical Storm Watch issued for South Florida; Isaias expected to become a hurricane

South Florida was put under a tropical storm watch Thursday afternoon with Isaias expected to approach Florida and the Bahamas as a Category 1 hurricane by Saturday.

In an 8 p.m. update, the National Hurricane Center said Tropical Storm Isaias has lost some forward speed but is still expected over the next couple of days. The center of Isaias is forecast to be near the Central Bahamas Friday night and move near or over the Northwestern Bahamas and near South Florida on Saturday.

The storm has already crossed the mountains of Hispaniola while flooding roads and homes in Puerto Rico and blowing roofs away in Haiti.

The NHC ordered a tropical storm watch from Ocean Reef northward to Sebastian Inlet, Florida, Thursday afternoon, and the government of the Bahamas has issued a hurricane warning for the Northwestern Bahamas, which includes the Abacos Islands, Grand Bahamas Island and Andros Island.


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Florida Has Record Deaths Again; Vaccine Progress: Virus Update

(Bloomberg) — Almost 10,000 people in the U.K. have been given an experimental Covid-19 vaccine from AstraZeneca Plc and the University of Oxford, a key step toward finding a shot that will help control the pandemic. Johnson & Johnson wants to start Phase 3 trials of its vaccine in September.

The U.S. economy suffered its sharpest downturn on record and the number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits rose for a second straight week. President Donald Trump raised the notion of delaying the next U.S. election scheduled for November.

Mexico’s economy also sank the most on record. Germany reported the highest number of new cases in about six weeks and its economy shrank by a record 10% in the second quarter.

Key Developments:

Global Tracker: Cases exceed 17 million; deaths pass 667,700Virus relief talks in Congress stalemated as time runs shortKitchen table beats office for 335,000 bankers working from homeVirus

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Florida reports 2nd day of record-setting deaths

The novel coronavirus pandemic has now killed more than 662,000 people worldwide.

Over 16.8 million people across the globe have been diagnosed with COVID-19, the disease caused by the new respiratory virus, according to data compiled by the Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins University. The actual numbers are believed to be much higher due to testing shortages, many unreported cases and suspicions that some governments are hiding or downplaying the scope of their nations’ outbreaks.

The United States has become the worst-affected country, with more than 4.3 million diagnosed cases and at least 149,873 deaths.

Latest headlines:

Alabama gov. extends statewide mask mandate, encourages in-classroom learning Rep. Louis Gohmert diagnosed with COVID-19

Here is how the news is developing today. All times Eastern. Check back for updates.

1:54 p.m.: Georgetown moving classes all online

Georgetown University is moving classes fully online this fall for undergraduate and

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Florida sets record for deaths in a day; COVID killing a Texan every 6 minutes, 16 seconds; Marlins’ season paused

The U.S. death toll from COVID-19 was nearing 150,000 on Tuesday as several states set weekly fatality records and Florida reported a one-day record for deaths. Further confirming the Sunshine State’s troubles with the coronavirus, the Miami Marlins’ season was temporarily suspended after 15 players and two staff members tested positive.

Dr. Anthony Fauci of the president’s coronavirus task force said the Marlins’ outbreak could endanger the Major League Baseball season, although he told ABC’s “Good Morning America” he doesn’t believe games need to stop now. 

Florida’s 186 deaths raised the toll there to more than 6,000. Gov. Ron DeSantis, who three weeks ago ordered in-classroom learning when schools reopen next month, has eased his rhetoric in recent days. He now wants schools to ensure parents have “the choice between in-person and distance learning” for their kids.

In Tennessee, Dr. Deborah Birx, the White House’s coronavirus response coordinator, urged Gov.

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Florida college courses should remain online-only in fall, faculty union says

Courses at Florida’s college and universities should remain online-only this fall, said the union that represents faculty members across the state, citing fears of the spread of coronavirus.

Leaders from the United Faculty of Florida, which represents instructors at all 12 public universities and 14 state colleges, and the Florida Education Association, the state’s largest teachers union, said Monday during a press conference that sending students back to campus next month would be dangerous.

As of Monday, the state has reported 432,747 coronavirus cases and 5,931 deaths since the pandemic began. The first day of fall classes varies between campuses. The University of Central Florida plans to return Aug. 24.

“Opening the colleges and universities at this time can only make things worse, and it is a step in the wrong direction,” said Jaffar Ali Shahul-Hameed, a vice president for the union and an associate professor at Florida Gulf Coast

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Here’s what to know in South Florida on July 17

We’re keeping track of the latest news regarding the coronavirus in South Florida and around the state. Check back for updates throughout the day.

Another restaurant shuts for good amid the COVID-19 pandemic

California Pizza Kitchen announced to its dine rewards members that it has closed its Coral Gables Miracle Mile location as of July 17, 2020, due to the coronavirus pandemic and lease challenges.
California Pizza Kitchen announced to its dine rewards members that it has closed its Coral Gables Miracle Mile location as of July 17, 2020, due to the coronavirus pandemic and lease challenges.

11:55 a.m.: Miami-Dade’s only California Pizza Kitchen, long a fixture on Coral Gables’ Miracle Mile across the street from Actors’ Playhouse at the Miracle Theatre, has closed for good.

According to an e-mail sent to its dine rewards members, the chain has closed the location citing the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic in South Florida and “related lease challenges with our landlords.”

The closest CPK location, then, is the one in Pembroke Lakes Mall in Broward County’s Pembroke Pines.

Florida adds more than 100 deaths for the

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