back to school

COVID-19
Public Domain Pictures / publicdomainpictures.net

At a time when we thought we might be moving on as the COVID-19 pandemic wears down, it seems like there is as much confusion and concern as ever.

WEMU's Lisa Barry talks with Susan Cerniglia, communications and health promotion administrator for the Washtenaw County Health Department, about the recent upward trend in COVID cases and the recommended tools for curtailing cases as more and more activities resume.


Jennifer Spitler
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Washtenaw County / bbbswashtenaw.org

For over a century, Big Brothers Big Sisters has mentored at-risk children around the country. It has fostered lifelong connections and friendships resulting in postive outcomes for marginalzed and at-risk youngsters. As expected, the pandemic and the many racially-charged events over the past year-and-a-half present more challenges. WEMU's David Fair checked in with Jennifer Spitler, the executive director of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Washtenaw County, to see how the "Bigs" and "Littles" are faring. 


University of Michigan / umich.edu

University of Michigan president Dr. Mark Schlissel says this is the first global pandemic of the modern biomedical age, and we're learning and making history as we go.

He talks with WEMU's Lisa Barry about the new academic year now getting underway and says everything involving campus life and university athletics "will be as safe as possible" as we continue to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic.


Eastern Michigan University
Eastern Michigan University / emich.edu

Despite added precautions to protect the health of staff and students at Eastern Michigan University against COVID-19, some faculty members are still not satisfied they are being fully protected as students return to campus and classes get underway next Monday, August 30th.

 

WEMU's Lisa Barry talks with Jeremy Proulx, EMU Federation of Teachers grievance officer, about their concerns and what they want EMU officials to do in light of the ongoing pandemic.


COVID-19
CDC / cdc.gov

For most K-12 students in Washtenaw County, school begins on Monday, August 30th. Meantime, the Centers for Disease Control data tracker has moved the country from substantial tranmission risk to high transmission risk. Washtenaw County Health Department spokesperson Susan Ringler-Cerniglia joined WEMU's David Fair to discuss the current state of the public health crisis and what the near future may bring. 


COVID-19
MGN

The CDC has released its latest COVID-19 data, and it shows that Washtenaw County is one of many communities seeing a rise in confirmed cases. In the meantime, Washtenaw County is now offering booster shots to immunocompromised residents who are already vaccinated. Washtenaw County Health Department spokesperson Susan Ringler-Cerniglia provides more details on these updates in a conversation with WEMU's David Fair.


Ann Arbor
Ann Arbor Public Schools / a2schools.org

The plan is to open the doors to all Ann Arbor Public School district students later this month, August 30th. WEMU'S Lisa Barry talks with Ann Arbor school superintendent Dr. Jeanice Swift about the current plans for reopening in a pandemic that include universal masking and "redesigned" before and after-school care for students.


WISD

The Washtenaw Intermediate School District says four of its districts experienced temporary issues with their internet connection on Tuesday as students began their virtual learning from home.  

Ann Arbor
Lisa Barry / 89.1 WEMU

Usually, the return of thousands of University of Michigan students to the Ann Arbor area adds an exciting and anticipatory energy to the community.  But this year, because we are in a pandemic, that excitement is tempered by concerns for public health and safety.  Will students adhere to recommended restrictions to slow the spread of COVID-19?  What impact will their added presence have on the Ann Arbor community during this global health crisis?  Those are some of the questions WEMU’s Lisa Barry discussed with Ann Arbor mayor Christopher Taylor and Ann Arbor police chief Michael Cox.

University of Michigan
University of Michigan School of Information / si.umich.edu

There have been protests for several days this week outside the University of Michigan Administration Building by a group of faculty members, who say they have "no confidence" in the university's plan for some in-person learning this fall.  Professor Kentaro Toyama talks with WEMU's Lisa Barry about organizing the protests and shares their concerns about health and safely teaching U-M students in person during a pandemic.


Wayne Baker
Psychology Today / psychologytoday.com

Dr. Wayne Baker, author and faculty director at the Center For Positive Organizations at the University of Michigan Ross School of Business, recently wrote an article for Psychology Today.  He spoke with WEMU's Lisa Barry about coping with back to school and the uncertainty and anxiety surrounding the many school-related decisions that need to be made in a pandemic.


US Capitol
Wikipedia Media Commons / wikipedia.org

Governor Gretchen Whitmer says she’s aware parents, students, and teachers are anxious for details on back-to-school plans.  But, as we hear from Rick Pluta, she says there’s still too much uncertainty about how the spread of COVID-19 might affect those plans.


School Supplies
Pixabay / pixabay.com

Michigan residents could get a break on their back to school shopping.  As Cheyna Roth reports, recently introduced bills would create a back to school spending holiday.


Scott Menzel
Washtenaw Intermediate School District / wisd.org

With classes getting underway, the superintendent of the Washtenaw Intermediate School District, Scott Menzel, talks with WEMU's Lisa Barry about what they will be focusing on as the new academic year begins.


Courtesy Photo / votingissexy2018.com

It won't be long before students of all ages start a new school year, but there's still a few things to do in the world of civic engagement.  WEMU's David Fair and the CivCity Initiative's Mary Morgan will talk about back-to-school preparations in the Ann Arbor area, as well as developments in Ann Arbor city business, in this week's "Civic Matters."


Lisa Barry

As a new academic year gets underway, 89.1 WEMU'S Lisa Barry spoke with University President Dr. Mark Schlissel in his on-campus office about a variety of topics, including the impact of immigration changes, recently raised questions about a major university donor, and, of course, football.


Dr. Dayna LePlatte

The start of the school year can be exciting for students, their parents, and educators, but it also brings a lot of uncertainty and change.

89.1 WEMU'S Lisa Barry spoke with Dr. Dayna LePlatte, a Michigan Medicine psychiatrist and medical school instructor, for some tips on dealing with the "back to school blues."


When classes start in Ypsilanti Community Schools next week, there will be some buildings that won't be in use. 

WEMU's Bob Eccles has a look at what'll happen with those buildings: