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Bay Area Headlines: Wednesday, 4/8/20, AM

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Corona Virus Caseload / School Campuses Stay Closed Through Spring / Berkeley Music Circus World Sing-Along

Corona Virus Caseload

As of last night, there were about 17,500 confirmed statewide. That's up over 1,000 from yesterday. in the Bay Area, there are nearly 4,000 confirmed cases. That's up from about 100. The number of patients that have been hospitalized in committed to intensive care units here in California has been steadily rising.

School Campuses Stay Closed Through Spring

Several Bay Area school districts announced, Tuesday, that all of their campuses will remain closed through the end of the school year because of the coronavirus crisis.

The decision to keep students at home was made by the coalition of six counties that have been working together since the start of the shelter-in-place ordinance. They include Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, San Mateo, Santa Clara and San Francisco. More than 860 thousand kids are enrolled in schools in those counties, according to Ed Data's most recent enrollment numbers.

While the choice to keep campuses closed was made in concert, the way districts are conducting distance education has varied widely. Some have issued homework while others have made it optional. Some teachers have adapted to lead online classrooms, but others struggle with the technology. And some kids don’t have access to tech at all.

Alameda County Superintendent of Schools L. Karen Monroe said the ripple effects could be severe. She said, "Asking parents and caregivers to take on the daunting task of supporting learning experiences … on top of their needs that many of our families have to continue their own work responsibilities or to ensure their bills can be paid ... adds even more stress to everyday home life."

I’m living that myself, with a wife and two kids who are all part of the San Francisco Unified School District. My son, Kyle, was looking forward to graduation in June when the coronavirus crisis struck. Now his hope to go back to school is gone.

"That sucks," he said. "Especially being a senior. But I think everyone is sacrificing something. So let’s just all do our part, and we’ll get through this together."

Berkeley Music Circus World Sing-Along

Participants in Berkeley Music Circus’s World Sing-Along are encouraged to step outside their homes, or open a window, this afternoon and sing or play an instrument to The Beatles song “All Together Now.” The event starts at noon in every timezone and continues each Wednesday through April 29.

Props and costumes are encouraged. Next week's participants can sing the late Bill Withers song “Lean On Me.” Photos and videos can be posted at facebook.com/AnotherBullwinkelShow. Another Bullwinkel Show, an event management company, helped get the word out about the event and suggested the time surrounding the novel coronavirus pandemic need not be so dark.