SAN LUIS OBISPO — On Friday, Feb. 26, San Luis Obispo County Health announced that starting on Mar. 1, some local child care workers and K-12 teachers and staff working in-person will be able to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.

Eligible workers in this sector will be contacted directly by their employer to schedule appointments; the County will not be involved in the process. 

In addition, starting last Friday, sports with modifications could resume based on guidance from the California Public Health Department, which applies to all organized youth and adult sports, including school, community programs, private clubs, and leagues. 

This change was possible because San Luis Obispo County’s COVID-19 case rate dropped below 14 cases per 100,000 – the State’s threshold for allowing these activities to return.

The San Luis Obispo County Office of Education released a statement regarding vaccines for educators and the newly released guidelines for youth sports on Saturday. 

County Superintendent James Brescia explained, “The County Office of Education and CAPSLO coordinating with public health are now scheduling vaccination appointments for educators in childcare, districts, charters, private and parochial schools. I worked the phone lines for the first few hours and directly observed how quickly and efficiently the process operates.”

Brescia went on to say, “If local health metrics continue to improve, our county may be allowed to move into the Red Tier by the state, which permits secondary schools to continue increasing in-person services. All school agencies in the county have plans to move forward should conditions allow.”

Currently, California has 47 counties in the Purple (widespread) Tier, 9 counties in the Red (substantial) Tier, which is where San Luis Obispo is, and 2 counties in Orange (moderate) Tier. Blueprint tiers are updated weekly each Tuesday. Find the status of activities in specific counties.

Brescia explained that the Central Coast Athletic Association (CCAA), which includes all county districts, has met and created “Return to Play Guidelines” to help implement new guidance released by the California Department of Public Health (CDPH).  

General requirements for all indoor or outdoor sports continue to apply, including limitations on observers (limited to household members for “strict purpose of age-appropriate supervision”), face-covering and distancing requirements, prohibitions against out-of-state games and tournaments, and competitions limited to one competition, per team, per day. 

Current conditions require COVID-19 testing for football and water polo athletes and coaches, with results made available within 24 hours of competition. 

Brescia ended with, “School districts may require more stringent guidelines than those included in the CDPH guidance. Adherence to public health safety requirements is much appreciated.”  

Governor Gavin Newsom launched the Safe Schools for All Hub back in January as a one-stop-shop for information about safe in-person instruction as well as California’s Safe Schools for All plan. 

For local information, visit readyslo.org

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