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Photos: Hundreds of Tucson high school students walk out of class to rally for abortion rights

Students from at least a dozen schools, including nearby Tucson High, as well as University, Rincon, Pueblo High, and City high schools, left their classes and headed to the University of Arizona to demonstrate for abortion rights. ... Read more»

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Overwhelmed by Omicron, Az hospitals are short-staffed & closing urgent cares, Banner doc says

Banner Health, which manages the largest network of hospitals in Arizona, reported that the Omicron variant of COVID continues to overwhelm their staff and facilities this winter as the state has counted the pandemic's highest number of confirmed daily cases this month. ... Read more»

Az Supreme Court rules laws blocking school vaccine & mask mandates were unconstitutionally passed

The Arizona Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that a series of laws barring schools from implementing COVID mask and vaccination mandates were unconstitutionally passed by the Arizona Legislature, as was a law meant to block teaching "critical race theory."... Read more»1

Treasury warns Ducey that federal funds cannot be to 'undermine' COVID mitigation

The U.S. Treasury warned Gov. Doug Ducey that he cannot use federal funds intended to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 as leverage against school districts that implemented mask mandates. ... Read more»

Tucson-area school districts celebrate ruling halting Az laws that blocked COVID mask mandates

Local schools, Pima County leaders and Democratic state legislators said that a judge made the "right call" with a Monday ruling that a series of laws passed by the Arizona Legislature barring schools from implementing COVID mask and vaccination mandates was unconstitutional. ... Read more»

With deadline looming, Az court reviews ban on school COVID mask & vax requirements

An Arizona judge is reviewing whether to scrap a state ban on school mask mandates and vaccination requirements before a Sept. 29 deadline. A court held earlier that the new law could not be enforced until 90 days after the legislative session, allowing some school districts to temporarily require masks as a bulwark against COVID-19. ... Read more»

Reactions sharp over Ducey using federal funds to force end of school COVID masks

After announcing two moves to punish school districts for implementing mask mandates, Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey faced withering criticism, and federal officials said they would review the expenditures and could force the state to repay "misused funds." ... Read more»

TUSD requiring COVID masks in schools, pushing back against state law

Students, teachers, parents and visitors on campuses in Tucson Unified School District must wear COVID-19 masks, the Governing Board voted Wednesday — a move that runs counter to a new state law intended to block such mandates. ... Read more»

Huckelberry backs Catalina Foothills on quarantines as schools prepare to open in August

As most of Pima County's school district prepare to open for classes in the coming weeks, school superintendents are working to establish mitigation efforts after Arizona Republicans passed a law that prohibits mask mandates and required vaccinations for students and staff. ... Read more»

Masks 'optional' at TUSD after Republicans ban schools from requiring face-coverings or vaccines

Masks will be optional at Tucson Unified School District this fall, after GOP lawmakers blocked Arizona schools from requiring face coverings as a way to mitigate COVID-19 infections. The bill also bars schools from requiring coronavirus vaccinations. ... Read more»

TUSD keeps COVID mask mandate through end of school year

Tucson Unified School District will maintain the district's mask mandate through the end of the school year, and may consider extending the requirement into next year even after the CDC announced that fully vaccinated people can forego wearing face coverings indoors. ... Read more»

Guest opinion

Preparing students for in-person school after pandemic pause

In-person school, even at a small preschool, is markedly different from how it was nearly a year ago when everyone left for spring break and never came back. There's a very real possibility that students will struggle with the transition.... Read more»

Many Arizona schools reopen for in-person instruction

Schools across the state reopened Monday, and many were offering in-person instruction for the first time since being shut down by the COVID-19 pandemic last year. Superintendent of Public Instruction Kathy Hoffman expressed confidence that things will get back on track for students this year. “But by and large, the majority of our schools across the state will be offering in-person, either starting today, starting next week or by the end of March,” Hoffman said in an interview with KTAR News Monday.... Read more»

Guest opinion

Foster: Stegeman's commentary offered all the TUSD drama but only half the story

"The apocalyptic financial forecast posited by my former TUSD Board colleague Mark Stegeman is convoluted at best, and don’t forget, very calculated in time for your three votes on the ballot for TUSD." — TUSD Board President Kristel Foster... Read more»6

Guest opinion

Stegeman: TUSD must reckon with cash problems

"TUSD has cash problems. Unsustainable operating deficits are driving it relentlessly toward a fiscal reckoning. Reports from TUSD’s internal auditor show that longstanding weaknesses in internal controls remain widespread. The Governing Board should embrace its statutory responsibility to address these issues." — former school board member Mark Stegeman... Read more»3

Lacking guidance, Az schools offer range of 'pandemic schooling' plans

When Gov. Doug Ducey and Arizona Schools Superintendent Kathy Hoffman ordered state schools to open for some type of in-person instruction on Aug. 17, they gave school administrators the flexibility to design a plan that best suits their districts. What they didn’t give them were directions.... Read more»

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