While You Were Sleeping: Coronavirus updates for July 30

Coronavirus

Fall sports confusion. For a few hours Wednesday, it appeared the fall sports season in Marion County was done, with word that the Marion County Public Health Department was shutting down the season until October.

Superintendents were in the middle of a Zoom call with the department when the news came out.

Ultimately, the decision was to review the idea for the next two or three weeks, meaning fall sports in Marion County are still on as scheduled for the time being.

IU Health on Indy 500 plan. IU Health reportedly has concerns about allowing fans at this year’s Indianapolis 500 amid the coronavirus pandemic.

In a statement provided to our media partners with the Indy Star, IU Health said it was concerned that hosting thousands of people for the event could lead to an outbreak.

“We have concerns about the risks of infection beyond the scope of the IMS plan, including social gatherings, travel, restaurants, bars, accommodations and other event-related activities,” IU Health said. “This could lead to a spike in COVID-19 infections as we continue to see cases and hospitalizations increase every day.”

IU Health urged IMS to “consider an alternative to running the Indy 500 with fans in August.”

IMS officials called IU Health’s viewpoint “inaccurate and premature” and said the track had consulted with public health officials on the plan for this year’s race.

IMS will limit capacity to 25% and require all fans to wear masks throughout the entire facility. Everyone entering the venue will be screened with a contactless thermometer.

There will be no drinking fountains or misting stations. The race is scheduled for Aug. 23.

IPS remote learning. Thursday, the IPS Board of Governors will vote on a recommendation from administrators for all IPS students to start the school year with remote learning.

The administration wants to start the school year on Aug. 17.

If approved, in-person learning would be delayed until at least October. The hope is that the delay will allow more time for the number of COVID-19 cases in Marion County to decline and stabilize.

IPS’ original plan called for school to start on Aug. 3, with families having the option for virtual learning. However, the district pushed the start date back two weeks in response to an uptick in coronavirus cases in Indiana.

IPS said all students will have an electronic device for the 2020-2021 school year. Students in Grades Pre-K-2 will receive an iPad; students in Grades 3-12 will receive a Chromebook. A MiFi mobile hot spot device will also be available to families who do not have access to internet service.

IPS also plans to supplement remote learning with learning hubs—physical spaces where students who struggle with remote instruction can go to access their classwork and get help.

More than $1,200? During a visit to West Texas, President Donald Trump hinted that a second round of stimulus checks could exceed the $1,200 payment amount issued in the first COVID-19 stimulus package.

Trump flew into Midland International Air and Space Port Wednesday for a fundraiser and to visit an oil rig, where he spoke to a crowd of energy executives and workers.

During the visit, he stopped for an exclusive interview with sister station KMID to discuss a second round of stimulus checks, among other topics.

When asked if a $1,200 direct payment to Americans was enough, Trump said, “We’re going to see, it may go higher than that, actually.”

“I’d like to see it be very high because I love the people, I want the people to get it, you know, the economy is going to come back,” Trump continued. “We saved millions of lives but now we’re bringing (the economy) back … we gotta take care of the people in the meantime.”

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