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The Roaring ‘20s are back! 2020 is party time! Instead of speakeasies selling illegal liquor, COVID parties are all the rage. The crime is not drinking. The crime is refusing to social distance or wear a mask. In states with strict regulations such as California, New York, and New Jersey, hosts of parties are arrested and fined. The greatest challenge, however, is college students. Colleges want to resume classes in a safe environment. The off-campus parties may undermine their best efforts to keep students COVID-free. If parties drive the COVID rate up, students will have to switch to online learning.
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Enrollment open for Texas Tuition Promise Fund

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Open enrollment in the Texas Tuition Promise Fund®, the state’s prepaid college-tuition program, began Sept. 1 and runs through Feb. 28, 2021. The Texas Tuition Promise Fund offers parents and loved ones the chance to prepay a child’s future higher education at Texas public colleges and universities at today’s prices, excluding medical and dental institutions.
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Teachers union goes online to track COVID-19 in Texas schools

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The Texas American Federation of Teachers (AFT) will hold a Zoom news conference at 10 am this morning (Thursday) showing the features of a new website that allows teachers, school employees, and community members to report COVID-19 cases, deaths, and unsafe working conditions. The Texas AFT tracker will let users search by district and campus, and view pinned reports on a map of Texas. The Texas Education Agency and the Texas Department of State Health Services have announced that districts will be required to report cases weekly starting today. However, it is unclear how the data will be presented to the public, and plans have been to display only district data—not cases by campus. To attend this Zoom meeting, please register in advance online at: https:// zoom.us/meeting/register/tJUvcuqqDMrG9DAQG6hpUhk3okQ7Iv2LQHu.
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CHS alumna honored for philanthropy at Women for OSU Symposium this week

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On Sept. 2, the Women for OSU Virtual Symposium offered inspiration drawn from the impact and philanthropy of the Women for OSU community. The event honored OSU’s 2020 Philanthropist of the Year, Helen Hodges, and 12 outstanding student scholars. CHS alumna Emily Alexander (CHS Class of 2018) was among the scholars honored for their outstanding philanthropic contributions.
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Ah, September! We’ve been waiting for you. Soon it will be a beautiful day in the neighborhood. A brutal heat wave has had us in its grip for the past six weeks. Temperatures have been over 100 degrees with zero precipitation. Our rain total thus far for 2020 is 8 inches. In a dry year, we average 12 inches. The intensity of the heat makes you think about cool, green days, and you begin to take stock of things. It helps to sort the current situation into the good, the bad, and the ugly. I’ll save the good for last.
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School is back in session!

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With bright new backpacks and shiny shoes, students at Canadian Elementary returned to the classroom on Wednesday for the first time in more than six months. Emelie and Isaiah Cervantes sported big smiles during CISD’s temperature screening process, and were eager to head in the front door. PHOTO BY LAURIE EZZELL BROWN
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“No mail again?” Those words ring out every day at our local post office. The mail slow-down is especially acute in rural towns. Lately, mail delivery is more like a mail dump. We get all our mail— 10-days’ worth—in one day. Mail delivery in a rural area is typically slower than it is in cities. We are at the end of the line as far as postal delivery goes. After mail hits the Dallas post office, it goes to Midland and then to San Angelo before reaching the U.S post office on Main Street here. The mail stays for a day at least in each of those cities. Now, with the slowdown, our mail is taking a three-day vacation in each town.