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Vaccine Mandates At School

Good Morning, I’m Annica Colbert….it’s Thursday, September 23rd. >>>> A San Diego charter school mandates covid-19 vaccines More on that next, but first... let’s do the headlines…. ###### Last season there weren’t many cases of the flu due to pandemic isolation and social distancing measures-- but with many covid-19 restrictions gone and people mixing again, this year could be a different story. As we approach flu season doctors are asking people to get the flu vaccine before the end of October. Dr. Heidi Meyer is a family physician for Kaiser permanente. the worry is that someone could get the delta variant and they could also get infected with the seasonal flu. that might not normally affect them severely but if they get both at the same time a young healthy person could die from the combination from both of those where as they would never die from one or the other (:18) ######## Governor Gavin Newsom signed two bills on [Wednesday] expanding and protecting health care and reproductive rights. It comes in the wake of growing threats across the country to abortion rights. “These are dark days. I don’t think one can understate the consequential nature of the moment that we’re living in.” (:06) The two bills would protect patient information even from those on a shared health plan… like a parent or spouse… as well as make it illegal to harass people going in and out of reproductive health facilities. ######## After days of intense and in some areas record-breaking heat, temperatures should start to feel a little bit more like fall today. Forecasters say it’ll be cooler, with a chance of showers and storms in the mountain and desert areas, starting today into early next week. ######### From KPBS, you’re listening to San Diego News Now. Stay with me for more of the local news you need. The COVID-19 pandemic has caused many parents to reconsider education options for their children. A new study by the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools reports a 7-percent increase in charter school enrollment across the U-S in the last school year. KPBS Education Reporter M.G. Perez takes us to a San Diego charter school taking a lead in COVID safety and vaccination mandates. Urban Discovery School is the textbook example of a charter school. This charter is an independent, public, tuition-free school offering students more innovative and direct instruction so they can succeed. UDS has a downtown middle and high school campus along with a K-5 campus educating 6-hundred students total.. “COVID feels bigger than all of us.” Shawn Low-sher is the CEO responsible for leading the charter school along with its Board of Trustees. They’ve now voted to require all eligible students on campus 12 and older be vaccinated against COVID-19. It’s the first public school system in San Diego County to do this. CG: Shawn Loescher/Urban Discovery Schools CEO “When we look at the data and science we notice that students that are unvaccinated across SD County and LA County are at much higher risk of getting COVID and being hospitalized for COVID.” Parents will have 60-days to comply and get both shots for their children. Peri Turnball has two children in charter schools. Her youngest, 11-year old Trevor, is in the 5th grade at UDS. He’s learning from home right now because he’s decided it’s safer until he’s eligible for a vaccine. CG: Peri Turnball/Parent “My biggest concern is that as a community we’re not operating together trying to get through this. It’s a prime example of where we can help our children understand they can be part of the solution. Tina Emmerick has two daughters in the UDS elementary school where she says they are thriving. She’s ready to have them vaccinated when the time comes. CG: Tina Emmerick/Parent “We know that vaccinations work. They’re what’s going to get us out of this pandemic and it’s going to help keep them protected since they’re back in school and around more people than they have been in the last year and a half.” “ Urban Discovery is all in when it comes to COVID safety. School administration officials are in contact with the County in hopes of turning both their campuses into vaccination sites sometime in the near future.” That lesson could be coming soon to other school districts. MGP KPBS News ######## The family of Earl McNeil, who died in police custody in 2018, will receive a 300-thousand dollar settlement from National City. Here’s more from KPBS’ John Carroll. 40-year old Earl McNeil had shown up outside the headquarters of National City Police in May of 2018… saying he had a warrant out for his arrest and wanted to turn himself in. But when officers tried to take him into custody, he resisted and spat at them. They put him in a restraining device and placed spit hoods over his head. Later at the jail, a deputy put a t-shirt over the spit hoods. McNeil stopped breathing right after paramedics arrived. They were able to resuscitate him, but he never regained consciousness and his family removed him from life support a couple of weeks later. After District Attorney Summer Stephan declined to press charges against any officers or deputies involved in the arrest, McNeil’s family sued National City and the officers and deputies involved. The National City City Council approved a 300-thousand dollar settlement last year and gave final approval to it Tuesday night. JC, KPBS News. ########## Last week, governor gavin newsom signed a law to effectively end single-family zoning in parts of the state. but researchers predict it won’t lead to a drastic increase in new homes. capradio’s nicole nixon explains. california has a housing affordability crisis… and la county supervisor holly mitchell says that’s jeopardizing the american dream of homeownership for many. mitchell: but what does that picture look like? it looks like a single-family home with a lot of land space. i think that picture needs to be expanded just like images of a family have shifted in this country. mitchell says friends questioned her decision to buy a duplex seventeen years ago. but it allowed her mother to live next door. last week, the governor signed senate bill 9, which allows homeowners to build duplexes, fourplexes and granny flats on land zoned for single-family homes. but an analysis by researchers at uc berkeley found new home construction is only physically or financially feasible on about five percent of the state’s single-family lots. david garcia co-authored the study. he says while the impact would be modest, these types of homes are exactly what california needs more of. garcia: senate bill 9 has the opportunity to allow more first-time buyers into the market. <<:06>> opponents to the new law have filed for a ballot initiative to undo the new changes. soc ########## Californians conserved less than 2 percent of water since gov. newsom asked for a 15 percent voluntary reduction in july. kqed climate reporter ezra david romero explains. ####### in the central valley southeast of fresno the k-n-p complex fire continues to burn in sequoia national park. more from capradio’s nick miller. this past weekend the flames reached the giant forest. that’s a grove of 2,000 huge sequoia trees. firefighters have wrapped the base of the world’s largest tree, the general sherman, in fire-resistant aluminum. this type of wrapping already saved the four guardsmen; those are four trees at the entrance of the forest. sequoia and kings canyon national parks are closed due to the fires. blazes in the area have burned into at least four other groves of sequoias but firefighters haven’t been able to determine how much damage was done. the knp complex fire started on september 10 and has burned more than 28,000 acres. officials forecast even more active fire weather the rest of the week. in sacramento, i’m nick miller ########## Coming up.... An Egyptian vulture hatched at the The San Diego Zoo safari park. “Old world vultures tend to take food directly from their parent’s beaks. They’ll eat the regurgitation, but they’ll also take little bits. So we do actually pick up little pieces of food and hand it to the chick.” It is the first time the species has reproduced in captivity in North America. That’s next, just after the break. The San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance has done something no other North American zoo has managed to do. Wildlife specialists have helped hatch an Egyptian vulture, an endangered carrion eater that travels between Europe and Africa. KPBS Environment Reporter Erik Anderson has details. Daisy Rivas walks between large wired enclosures in a quiet area on the eastern edge of the San Diego Zoo Safari Park. “Hi guys, good morning.” This off exhibit area is home to a pair of striking white vultures. The male with fluffy white plumage sits on a perch surveying Rivas. The female is on the ground but she keeps her distance. “They are such special vultures. They are the only tool using vultures so they are very smart birds. They use rocks to break open ostrich eggs and they take a lot of the different parts of the carcass that other birds can’t get to. So they just play an important part in the ecosystem.” Interaction like this is limited because Rivas wants the birds to keep their healthy distrust of people. In fact, much of the monitoring happens inside a shed out of the bird’s sight. There’s a cabinet with video screens that monitor all the enclosures. “So we have the opportunity to look at the bird’s behavior without disturbing them too much. So we actually have cameras on a lot of our nesting areas. So this is a great view of our nesting area for the breeding pair of Egyptian vultures.” Ant elevated square box serves as a nest. The birds typically clear a flat rocky area to lay an egg. Inside the plywood shelter there’s a barrier that can keep eggs from falling. The nest is screened from a pair of territorial Palm Nut vultures that are in the next enclosure. “But it’s also good for them to not be able to see these guys when they’re sitting so they don’t get distracted but they can see them anywhere they are perching and they can make sure they’re protecting the area from other birds nearby.” The mating pair has done something not accomplished before in North America. They produced and fertilized an egg, which hatched earlier this year. The park’s lead condor care specialist Ron Webb showed us the trailer where the endangered chick was puppet fed. . Jamila was brought to this feeding station in a small white bowl, filled with snuggly animal hair. Her faint squeaks told keepers she was hungry and ready to eat. “We have a one way, one way windows in here. So as long as this light’s on and this light’s off, she can’t see us. But we can see her.” The feedings started with a simple sock puppet and a pair of tweezers. “Olde world vultures tend to take food directly from their parent’s beaks. They’ll eat the regurgitation, but they’ll also take little bits. So we do actually pick up little pieces of food and hand it to the chick.” As the bird grew the sock puppet was replaced by a more realistic one that staff use to care for condor chicks. “When they’re young its easy. When they get older they start pulling on them like they do with the parents skin in the nest pot.” That tiny tan chick is now fully fledged and a bit nervous with human visitors. Jamila grabs the fence and pumps her wings as if to let everyone know this is her territory. Her dark brown plumage will eventually become white like her parents. The vultures arrival is being cheered by international conservation groups. “Yes it is very welcome to have a broader network of zoos that have that species and can potentially provide birds for release programs.” Steffen Oppel is a conservation scientist for the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds. He says more than half of the vulture’s population has been lost to hunting, poison and electrocution in the last 40 years. Captive breeding only happens in a handful of locations in Europe and Israel and those efforts produce a small number of birds each year. The population continues falling in parts of Europe and Africa, but there are conservation successes. “In southern France and in northern Spain and on the Canary Islands, intensive conservation programs have actually managed to reverse the fortune of the Egyptian Vulture but they are working very closely with communities by changing the way we build electricity infrastructure.” And while it’s tough to help correct the challenges the birds are facing in the wild half a world away, Rivas hopes the breeding effort in San Diego will grow here and expand to other North American Zoos. She says that’ll strengthen the bird's chances for survival. Erik Anderson KPBS News That’s it for the podcast today. Be sure to catch KPBS Midday Edition At Noon on KPBS radio, or check out the Midday podcast. You can also watch KPBS Evening Edition at 5 O’clock on KPBS Television, and as always you can find more San Diego news online at KPBS dot org. I’m Annica Colbert. Thanks for listening and have a great day.

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A San Diego Charter school is the first in the county to mandate vaccines for students 12 and older. The move by Urban Discovery School comes as a charter school alliance reports increased enrollment during the COVID-19 pandemic. Meanwhile, Governor Gavin Newsom asked for a 15% voluntary water reduction in July but Californians have conserved less than 2%. Plus, the San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance has hatched an Egyptian vulture.