Look here for fun stuff on national elections and the Trump Effect as well as less fun stuff about the rise in COVID infections in Maryland, and what some school districts are doing to respond.
ON THE NATIONAL SCENE
From POLITICO Playbook Sunday: A major NYT tally of all the lies about the 2020 election finds that Trump’s effort to subvert or cast doubt on that count has spread to a full 44% of Republican state legislators in nine key swing states, Nick Corasaniti, Karen Yourish and Keith Collins report . That’s more than 350 sitting lawmakers who have embraced the lies, “turning statehouses into hotbeds of conspiratorial thinking and specious legal theories…”
In a related WaPo article, GOP governors put out serious money to protect incumbent GOP governors like Georgia’s Brian Kemp who were in Trump’s crosshairs for alleged disloyalty to the GOP capo. You may eyeball all of this quite long story but see no evidence of Larry Hogan’s fingerprints on this activity, even though he has done fundraisers alongside Kemp.
Students and teachers told U.S. House members during a hearing last Thursday that their right to talk about race and LGBTQ+ issues in public schools is being silenced due to an onslaught of new state laws as well as pressure on school boards from right-wing advocates.
The House Oversight and Reform Civil Rights and Civil Liberties Subcommittee, which is led by Maryland Rep. Jamie Raskin (D), held the hearing to examine the impact of new state laws in “Red States” that bar educators from discussing American history, race and LGBTQ+ issues in K-12 public classrooms. More in Maryland Matters
AND IN MARYLAND…
Let’s start with some good news… Capital News Service reports on the restoration of Masonville Cove on the Patapsco near an industrial area in Baltimore, which had been a near landfill but has been converted to a nature sanctuary with the help of a device with the unlikely monicker of Captain Trash Wheel. It’s an Urban Wildlife Refuge Partnership with many agencies involved. Capital News Service is the much-awarded student reporting project at UMCP’s Merrill College of Journalism.
Surging Cases Bring Spotty Mask Mandates or Advisories in Two MD Systems
The Capital Gazette: “With COVID-19 rates rising, Anne Arundel schools Superintendent George Arlotto has announced that the system will ask students and staff to mask at schools where at least 5% of the population has tested positive for the virus. It isn’t a mandate, but a request, made in an effort to minimize the risk of outbreaks in classes as the end of the school year is weeks away, school officials say.”
And DCist reports “COVID cases in Montgomery County Public Schools are spiking, reaching their highest levels since the January omicron wave. More than 2,910 cases have been reported among students and staff in the past 10 days, according to MCPS data. The surge has prompted one school, Sherwood Elementary School, to reinstate its mask requirement after more than 63 students and staff tested positive in recent days.”
Cases are surging statewide, officials said. The Baltimore Sun reported Sunday “Cases are rising around Maryland and much of the Northeast…
“This isn’t over,” said Crystal Watson, public health lead in the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security’s Coronavirus Resource Center, during a news conference Friday marking the United States reaching the milestone of a million COVID-19 deaths earlier in the week.
“We are in the midst of a surge,” she said. Much more in the Sun article.