Mayor Says New York City Schools Will Not Fully Reopen In September

New York City’s 1.1 million public school students will attend class part-time this fall according to a preliminary plan announced today by Mayor Bill de Blasio in a press conference. Students will spend one to three days in the classroom each week. On staggered schedules, there will likely be only a dozen people gathered together at a time, including students, teachers and aides.
The nation’s largest school system, which has more than 1,800 schools, has long been plagued by overcrowding, with classes held in hallways and trailers. Most classes in middle and high school have at least 30 students. De Blasio and schools chancellor Richard Carranza, said they will adhere to the school safety guidelines laid out by the CDC, which recommend that students and staff stay six feet away from one another.
De Blasio laid out three possible scenarios. In one, school buildings would accommodate 50% of the number of students they had taken in the past. Students would get live instruction the same two days each week and every other Monday. The second plan would serve only a third of the normal number of people in each building. Students would go to school 1-2 days a week and get a total of five days of in-person instruction every three weeks. In the third model, students would attend in a six-day rotation, with two consecutive in-person days and four remote days in a cycle.
De Blasio said that the plan is subject to change, depending on recommendations from public health officials.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, who frequently clashes with the mayor, said in his own press conference later today that he would make the final decisions about school reopening statewide. He will issue additional guidance Monday and school districts must submit their reopening plans to his office by July 31. A final decision will come the first week in August.
It’s not clear whether Cuomo will try to interfere with de Blasio’s plan. When a reporter asked the governor whether de Blasio’s ideas were “credible,” Cuomo answered “No.”
President Trump has been pressuring school leaders to fully reopen K-12 schools. Today he threatened to withhold federal funds if they don’t. Most school funding comes from state and local government sources. The federal government pays for just 8.3% of public school budgets nationwide, according to government figures. Nevertheless, Trump and Vice President Pence are trying to control what local districts do. To make it easier for schools to open, Pence said today that the CDC would issue new, less stringent school reopening guidelines soon.

Tech CEO Apologizes After Viral Video Captures His Racist Rant At Asian Family

Michael Lofthouse, the CEO of a San Francisco-based tech company, Solid8, apologized on Tuesday after he was caught on camera making racist comments to an Asian family at a California restaurant, saying he “lost control and made incredibly hurtful and divisive comments.”


KEY FACTS

Lofthouse told an Asian family holding a birthday celebration at a restaurant in Carmel, California, that“Trump's gonna f**k you. You f*****g need to leave. You f*****g Asian piece of s**t,” a video of the incident shows.
In an Instagram post, Jordan Chan, the woman who recorded the Video Viral, said her family was singing happy birthday and taking pictures when Lofthouse started speaking to them.
An employee at the restaurant then stepped in between Lofthouse and the family, saying, “You do not talk to our guests like that. They are valued guests. Get out!" She then escorted him off the property.
In a statement to a local ABC affiliate, Lofthouse apologized: “My behavior in the video is appalling. This was clearly a moment where I lost control and made incredibly hurtful and divisive comments. I would like to deeply apologize to the Chan family. I can only imagine the stress and pain they feel. I was taught to respect people of all races, and I will take the time to reflect on my actions and work to better understand the inequality that so many of those around me face every day."

Return to School During COVID-19


A big question parents have right now is how students can go back to school safely during COVID-19. The latest American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) advice says children learn best when they are in school. However, returning to school needs careful steps in place to keep students and staff safe.

Why students should go back to school–safely

The AAP guidance is based on what pediatricians and infectious disease specialists know about COVID-19 and kids. Evidence so far suggests that children and adolescents are less likely to have symptoms or severe disease from infection. They also appear less likely to become infected or spread the virus.
Schools provide more than just academics to children and adolescents. In addition to reading, writing and math, children learn social and emotional skills, get exercise and access to mental health support and other things that cannot be provided with online learning. For many families, school is where kids get healthy meals, access to the internet, and other vital services.

What schools can do

To stay safe, there are a number of steps schools should take to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. They include:
Physical distancing. The goal should be to stay at least 6 feet apart to help prevent the spread of the virus that causes COVID-19. However, spacing desks at least 3 feet apart and avoiding close contact may have similar benefits for students--especially if students wear cloth face coverings and do not have symptoms of illness.
Teachers and staff, who are likely more at risk of getting COVID-19 from other adults than from children at school, should stay the full 6 feet apart from each other and students when possible. Teachers and staff should also wear cloth face coverings and limit in-person meetings with other adults.
When possible, outdoor spaces can be used for instruction and meals. Students should also have extra space to spread out during activities like singing and exercising.
Cloth face coverings & hand hygiene. Frequent hand washing with soap and water is important for everyone. In addition, all adults should wear cloth face coverings. Preschool and elementary students can benefit from wearing masks if they do not touch their mouths or noses a lot. Secondary school students should wear cloth face masks, especially when they can't stay a safe distance apart.
Classroom changes. To help limit student interaction outside the classroom, schools can:
  • Have teachers move between classrooms, rather than having students fill the hallways during passing periods.
  • Allow students to eat lunches at their desks or in small groups outdoors instead of in crowded lunchrooms.
  • Leave classroom doors open to help reduce high touch surfaces such as doorknobs.
Temperature checks and testing. COVID testing ​of all students is not possible for most schools. Taking students' temperature at school also may not always be feasible. Schools should establish ways to identify students with fever or other symptoms of illness. ​They can also frequently remind students, teachers, and staff to stay home if they have a fever of 100.4 degrees or higher or have any signs of illness.
Cleaning and disinfecting. Schools should follow CDC guidelines on proper disinfecting and sanitizing classrooms and common areas.

Buses, hallways and playgrounds

Since these are often crowded spaces, schools can:
  • Give bus riders assigned seats and require them to wear a cloth face coverings while on the bus. Encourage students who have other ways to get to school to use those options.
  • At school, mark hallways and stairs with one-way arrows on the floor to cut down on crowding in the halls.
  • Outdoor activities are encouraged, so students should be allowed to use the playground in small groups.

Other considerations

In addition to having plans in place to keep students safe, there are other factors that school communities need to address:
Pressure to catch up. Students may not have gained as much from distance learning. Some students may not have had access to computers and internet. Schools should be prepared to adjust curricula and not expect to make up all lost progress. It is important to balance core subjects with physical education and other learning experiences.
Students with disabilities. The impact of schools being closed may have been greater for students with disabilities. They may have a difficult time transitioning back to school after missing out on instruction time as well as school-based services such as occupational, physical and speech-language therapy and mental health support counseling. School should review the needs of each child with an Individual Education Program before they return to school, and providing services even if they are done virtually.
Immunizations. It is important as students return to school that they are up to date on their immunizations. It will be critical that stud​ents and staff get their flu shot this year to reduce the spread of influenza this fall and winter. Your pediatrician is available now to make sure you child is ready for school.
Exams. ​ If your child participates in extracurricular activities like sports or band, talk with your pediatrician to see if they need a preparticipation physical exam.  Kewell-child visits​ are also important.  
Behavioral health/emotional support. Your child's school should anticipate and be prepared to address a wide range of mental health needs of students and staff. Schools should provide mental health support to any student struggling with stress from the pandemic and recognize students who show signs of anxiety or distress. Schools also can help students with suicidal thoughts or behavior get needed support.
Nutrition. Many students receive healthy meals through school meal programs More students might be eligible for free or reduced meals than before the pandemic. Schools should provide meal programs even if the school closes or the student is sick and stays home from school.
Students at higher risk. While COVID-19 school policies can reduce risk, they will not prevent it entirely. Even with safety steps in place, some students with high-risk medical conditions may need to continue distance learning or other accommodations. Talk with your pediatrician and school staff (including school nurses) to determine if your child can safely return to school.

Remember

Returning to school during the COVID-19 pandemic may not feel like normal – at least for a while. But having school plans in place can help keep students, staff, and families safe.
Schools should also prepare to close again and temporarily switch to distance learning if there are new waves of COVID-19 infection.

Sick Nazi song goes viral on TikTok with more than 6.5 million views


The now-banned jingle, which was sourced to a teenager in the UK, featured appalling anti-Semitic lyrics such as, “We’re going on a trip to a place called Auschwitz, it’s shower time,” reports the BBC. The words were in reference to the Nazi death camp in Poland where Jewish prisoners were mass-murdered during World War II under the guise of taking a communal shower.
The song was featured in over 100 videos after first surfacing as the soundtrack to a clip of a giant swastika-emblazoned scorpion attacking and killing people. It also appeared in a first-person shooter game where players kill enemies using poison gas, a clip from the computer game “Roblox” featuring a Hitler doppelgänger, and others depicting footage from documentaries of the Holocaust.
“It was incredibly distressing to watch this sickening TikTok video aimed at children,” Stephen Silverman, director of investigations and enforcement for the Campaign Against Antisemitism, tells the BBC.
Unfortunately, the sordid clips collectively amassed millions of views in less than three days before getting yanked from the platform — a culling process that took eight hours to complete.
Experts chalk up the song’s success to TikTok’s eyeball-seeking algorithm that allows offensive memes to metastasize rapidly.
While TikTok has remained tight-lipped about its content strategy, “it’s widely believed that it’s similar to other commonly used models that collect data on our content consumption and peers influenced network,” says Michael Priem, chief executive of Modern Impact.
He explains: “As specific videos gain momentum, the algorithm then promotes them more widely across the platform. Hence, the users [are] intuitively asking each other to ‘help this go viral.’
Indeed, research has shown that “TikTok has become one of the fastest vectors for transmission of memes mocking the Holocaust,” according to Silverman.
However, the video-sharing site denies that it is a hotbed of offensive content.
“Keeping our users safe is a top priority for TikTok, and our community guidelines make clear what is not acceptable on our platform,” said a TikTok representative. “We do not tolerate any content that includes hate speech, and the sound in question, along with all associated videos, have now been removed.”
They added that they were constantly working to “ensure TikTok remains a safe place for positive creative expression.”
This isn’t the only time TikTok has been in hot water of late. The video-streaming platform was recently targeted by the feds for allegedly violating children’s privacy. India infamously banned the app last month amid the nation’s military standoff with China, and the US is contemplating following suit over security concerns.

Joe Biden's proposal says he wants schools to reopen this fall, but is 'safe'


The comments come as Biden’s 2020 rival, President Trump, has begun promising to turn up the heat on US governors to reopen public schools in the fall.
“Of course he does,” the Team Biden source said when asked if the former vice president hoped schools would be able to return in the fall.
“That’s why he’s been making these proposals and pressing Trump to act. But we need to ensure we can do it safely, in line with the recommendations of public health experts, and Trump keeps failing us on that score,” they added.
Speaking from the White House on Tuesday, the commander-in-chief was adamant in his pledge that students would return to in-person classes in the fall.
“We’re very much going to put pressure on governors and everybody else to open the schools, to get them open. It’s very important,” he said at a White House event on school reopenings.
“So we are going to be putting a lot of pressure on [governors] to open your schools in the fall,” he continued.
Biden campaign spokesperson Andrew Bates said in a statement on Trump’s efforts, “Almost a month ago, Joe Biden called out Donald Trump for failing to do the work to help our schools reopen safely and effectively — and laid out clear steps that would give schools the guidance, resources, and support they need to do so. Almost two months ago, Biden was advocating for badly-needed relief to our states and cities so that they could pay teachers, but Trump and Senate Republicans are still stalling on that.”
Biden’s schools reopening plan includes significantly scaled-up funding for PPE and “enhanced sanitation efforts” for child care providers and schools — particularly Title I schools.
Speaking Friday during a virtual fundraiser with the National Education Association, Biden predicted schools would likely use distance learning “for a while longer,” before echoing the teachers union’s call for more money for safety measures.

Mengandeng Google Cloud, BRI Makin Canggih Berdayakan UMKM

Bank BRI terus melakukan terobosan baru dalam memperkuat peran digitalisasi bagi pelaku Usaha Mikro, Kecil dan Menengah (UMKM) di Indonesia. Salah satunya melalui kerja sama dengan Google Cloud dalam rangka memperluas jangkauan dan kapasitas layanan teknologi digital.
“Ini sebuah langkah maju dari transformasi digital Bank BRI. Kami memiliki kepedulian dan tanggung jawab dalam meningkatkan layanan kepada pelaku UMKM untuk go digital,“ ungkap Direktur Digital dan Teknologi Informasi (TI) Bank BRI Indra Utoyo dalam sesi virtual meeting bersama CEO Google Cloud, Thomas Kurian (01/07)
Terdapat tiga tujuan utama dalam kerja sama ini yakni pertama, mendorong ekonomi kerakyatan melalui pemberdayaan UMKM di Indonesia dengan high tech dan low touch. Dalam poin ini, Bank BRI akan mempertajam merchant assessment melalui pemberdayaan data UMKM yang dimiliki Google yang mencakup seluruh Indonesia.
Kerja sama dengan Google Cloud juga akan meningkatkan kompetensi UMKM melalui pelatihan digital bersama Google Academy (Youtube, dan Google MyBusiness).
Kedua, melalui kerja sama ini Bank BRI berupaya menciptakan micropreneur baru melalui penyaluran KUR Digital. Bank BRI juga akan meningkatkan eksposur dari KUR Digital ke seluruh pelosok dengan pemanfaatan Google Ads dan mempertajam penerapan KUR digital dengan teknologi Cloud dan Artificial Intelligence.
Poin ketiga, kerja sama ini akan menciptakan keunggulan bagi BRI dalam menciptakan Artificial Intelligence based Risk Management milik Bank BRI. Dengan kerja sama ini, Bank BRI akan mempertajam akurasi Artificial Intelligence BANK BRI yaitu “BRIBRAIN” dengan best practice dan kerjasama teknologi yang dimiliki Google.
“Untuk masuk ke micro dan ultramicro, Kami perlu melakukan terobosan dalam penerapan Artificial Intelligence untuk Merchant Assessment, Credit Scoring, Product Recommendation dan Fraud Detection. Kami harus dinamis, cepat, dan akurat,” tegas Indra.
Indra menambahkan sebagai Bank terbesar yang menyalurkan pendanaan bagi pelaku UMKM, kerjasama dengan Google Cloud akan membantu BRI untuk memperluas jangkauan layanan keuangan untuk UMKM, meningkatkan kompetensi UMKM, dan penyaluran produk keuangan sesuai dengan profil dari UMKM.
Kerja sama ini pada akhirnya juga membantu Bank BRI dalam meningkatkan leading financial indicator berupa Loan, Savings, Current Account Saving Account (CASA) dan Fee Based Income (FBI).

What Are Childhood Mental Disorders?

Mental health in childhood means reaching developmental and emotional milestones, and learning healthy social skills and how to cope when there are problems. Mentally healthy children have a positive quality of life and can function well at home, in school, and in their communities. This website provides information about children’s mental healthLearn more about specific child mental health conditions, treatments, prevention, and public health research on children’s mental health.


Mental disorders among children are described as serious changes in the way children typically learn, behave, or handle their emotions, which cause distress and problems getting through the day. Many children occasionally have problems like fears and worries, or disruptive behaviors. If symptoms are severe and persistent, and interfere with school, home, or play activities, the child may be diagnosed with a mental disorder.

Among the more common mental disorders that can be diagnosed in childhood are attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), anxiety, and behavior disorders.
Other childhood disorders and concerns that affect how children learn, behave, or handle their emotions can include learning and developmental disabilities, autism, and risk factors like substance use and self-harm.

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Mayor Says New York City Schools Will Not Fully Reopen In September

New York City’s 1.1 million public school students will attend class part-time this fall according to a preliminary plan announced today by ...