Jim Inman (Photo: Jim Inman/canva.com)
Will facemasks return to our daily lives?
With the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention updating their position on mask wearing, Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb is working with state health officials to determine next steps.
“You just look at the numbers, you look at the cases, you look at the hospitalization rates, you look at the deaths – it’s overwhelmingly unvaccinated,” Holcomb said.
The state’s public health emergency and COVID executive orders are set to expire at the end of the week.
Indiana currently has 44% of the state’s eligible population fully vaccinated, according to the Mayo Clinic’s website. Nearly 47% of the the state has received at least one dose of vaccine.
With the start of school for MCCSC students just days away, the school board has established protocols for the upcoming year.
During the board’s meeting Tuesday night, the board heard from a variety of parents and community members.
Ultimately, the decision was made that face masks will be required for all students and non-vaccinated staff while inside MCCSC buildings. Masks can be taken off while outside – for students and staff – as well as during lunch.
Staff and faculty who provide proof of vaccination will not be required to wear masks, although their use is recommended.
Anyone riding a school bus will be required to wear a mask.
Students will participate in classroom learning, instead of being in gymnasiums, cafeterias and other large rooms. Libraries will be open, and music, art and physical education will return to their appropriate classrooms as well.
The MCCSC school board approved the protocols unanimously.
For certain employees of the school system, a $1,000 COVID-19 vaccination stipend was approved as well. Those employees must have worked 120 or more days in the last school year and be eligible for benefits.
MCCSC Superintendent Jeff Hauswald said the estimates for the stipend range from $1.4 to $1.6 million, and fill be funded through federal grant dollars.
And on this day in history – July 29, 1958 – the US Congress created the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, or NASA. The space program has been part of American culture, education and entertainment through the design of the space shuttles, astronauts and space stations.
On June 3, 1965, Gemini 4 astronaut Ed White became the first American to conduct a spacewalk.
On July 20, 1969, NASA’s Apollo 11 mission made history by putting a man on the moon.
On July 20, 1976, the first Mars spacecraft – Viking 1 – landed and transmitted information back to Earth.
On April 21, 1981, the first Space Shuttle – Discovery – launched into space.