Dear SBCSS Team,

On July 17, Gov. Newsom announced restrictions for the reopening of schools in counties that are on the state monitoring list for increased cases of COVID-19. Schools within these counties can reopen to in-class instruction once the county has been off the monitoring list for 14 consecutive days. More than thirty counties, including San Bernardino County comprise that list and will begin the school year with distance learning to protect the health and safety of our students and staff and slow the spread of COVID-19. In the following weeks, all schools in San Bernardino County will announce their definitive timelines and instructions on how the 2020-21 academic school year will begin. In respect to school sports, the California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) issued a press release on July 20 stating the impact of COVID-19 on fall sports and its decision to postpone the traditional fall season of sports until Dec. 2020.

Superintendent's Message
“I applaud our school districts for their responsiveness to the new school guidance. Many have already finalized their school reopening plans and quickly pivoted to the full distance learning model to meet this requirement.” View this week’s video message from Superintendent Alejandre.

Business Services
Maintenance, Operations and Transportation is installing COVID-19 compliant signage at all administrative and school facilities. The signage promotes current safety practices to wear masks, social distance and practice good hygiene to keep our workplaces safe. Procurement is sourcing and adding to our warehouse stock personal protective equipment such as face shields, face masks and disposable gowns for para-educators. In the following weeks, Procurement will be installing touchless hand sanitizer dispensers to walls in high traffic areas throughout our administrative buildings.

Human Resources
Human Resources (HR) continues to work diligently with our unions to negotiate the effects of reopening our schools while at the same time, ensuring that the workplace is safe for returning employees. As more and more staff rotate back into worksites, HR is finalizing the Transitional Reentry Plan for SBCSS employees. The document changes regularly based on updated guidance and HR continues to incorporate new data and protocols to ensure the safety of staff as we return to our work environments.

Innovation and Engagement
The Mountain Desert Career Pathways (MDCP) submitted 167 grades to Barstow College and 3,391 to Victor Valley College for articulation purposes. The submissions illustrate a 24 percent increase from the 2018-2019 school year and represents around 3,138 individual students receiving articulated credit. On July 28, the Healthy SBCSS staff will be hosting the Virtual Youth Mental Health First Aid training for 40 staff members of the Rialto Unified School District Public Safety Department. The training plans teach skills that provide initial support to children and adolescents who may be developing a mental health or substance abuse problem.

Education Support Services
Education Support Services, Footsteps2Brilliance and Countywide Vision literacy partners are working to expand Countywide Vision2Read efforts. With the goal of raising the bar for literacy in San Bernardino County at the forefront of the conversation, the group is assessing widespread community access to early literacy resources such as F2B's new Clever Kids University and Virtual Summer School, as well as the Summer Reading Challenge 2020. Exposure to interactive ebooks, vocabulary and skill-based games is vital to combat learning loss and provides quality resources for young learners and their families while continuing in remote learning environments.

Office of the Superintendent
The San Bernardino Probation Department donated several boxes of Girl Scout Cookies to SBCSS last week. The Girl Scout Cookies were then distributed to our county programs. SBCSS hosted its second Equity Webinar Series: Schools, Safety and SROs. The event consisted of students, school resource officers and school officials sharing their experiences and interactions between safety officers and students. It was an overall success! Interested staff can view the webinar recording on the SBCSS Equity and Access webpage.

Student Services
Student Services teachers and paraeducators begin their annual "Back-to-School" meetings for each of the three regions this week. Area directors will have the opportunity to introduce new Assistant Superintendent of Student Services Myrlene Pierre to classroom staff. In addition to hearing about plans to begin the school year with remote learning for SBCSS students, teachers and paraeducators also will receive key updates from Human Resources, Risk Management and association leaders regarding returning to work in the COVID-19 environment.

Technology Services
The Digital Learning Services team, in collaboration with the Educational Technology Team at Riverside County Office of Education, delivered its highly regarded Distance Learning Best Practices professional development session for the Inland Empire Google Education Camp. The session was attended by more than 350 instructors serving districts throughout San Bernardino and Riverside counties. According to Tech Services, with the fiscal year now open, a number of orders are coming in for laptops and devices to support remote working conditions. TS is working with vendors to solicit competitive price points but warns that prices have increased and demand is high. TS will continue to work with vendors and facilitate orders for staff in as timely a manner as possible in the current environment.

We Need You!
We want to encourage everyone to continue using face coverings in public spaces, maintaining social distancing, frequently washing hands for 20 seconds and using hand sanitizers only when hand washing is not practical. As a community, we can work together to follow the health guidelines set forth by public health officials and stop the spread of the coronavirus. When we take personal responsibility and follow recommended health guidelines, we can each do our small part to get our schools and economy back on track.

Thank you for continuing to transform lives through education!