July 31, 2020
A publication by Gloucester's Department of Community Engagement and Public Information
County Monitoring Potential Impacts of Isaias
Hurricane Isaias could begin impacting our area as early as Monday morning. Now is the time to check your hurricane plans and supplies!

For more information, check out Gloucester County's Disaster Preparedness Quick Guide by visiting  https://www.gloucesterva.info/365/Emergency-Management
Gloucester County Emergency Management Urging Residents to Prepare for Hurricane Season Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

Gloucester County Emergency Management officials are urging residents to prepare now as peak hurricane season approaches and the nation continues to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Although it’s always of the utmost importance, having an evacuation plan and being prepared is even more serious this year,” said Brett Major, Gloucester’s Emergency Management Coordinator. “Residents should make advance arrangements in efforts to avoid congregate (large group) sheltering if at all possible, as there is still a risk of COVID-19 transmission in congregate sheltering facilities, despite all of our advance plans to mitigate its spread.”

With shelter capacity also being limited due to social distancing requirements, it is imperative that residents try to identify their own shelter location outside of an evacuation zone - perhaps with friends or family. 

Gloucester County Assists Residents with COVID-Related Needs and Expenses
Gloucester County and Bay Aging are partnering to bring essential services to Gloucester County residents during the COVID-19 pandemic. At their July 7th meeting, the Gloucester County Board of Supervisors allocated $610,659 for COVID-19 related and responsive programs targeted specifically to assist higher-risk residents who are maintaining enhanced isolation practices as well as those that have experienced financial hardships related to the pandemic. The programs include opportunities for rent / mortgage relief, expanded public transportation services, as well as meal delivery and in-home personal care services for those in isolation. 

Nine Gloucester Businesses Awarded Grants - More Awards Available

Nine Gloucester businesses were awarded grants totaling $31,677.37 through the Gloucester CARES Act Business Recovery Round 1 which ran July 4 through July 17. The Gloucester County Board of Supervisors allocated $512,000 in funds provided under the federal government’s CARES Act to help our local businesses impacted by COVID-19. This grant program was designed to reimburse the increased costs of changed business practices in response to the pandemic not including the normal costs of operating the business.
Safer at Home Round 2 (July 15 – August 30) grant awards will reimburse eligible costs incurred after May 7, 2020 related to compliance with Executive Order 61 and any subsequent Executive Orders along with guidance for business operation and eligible costs associated with the March 1, 2020 US Treasury Cares Relief Fund guidance on costs. Eligible costs for reimbursement up to a total of $10,000.
Go to  https://www.b2bmidpen.com/ for application and information.
School Board Votes To Implement Remote Learning for all Students for the First Nine-week Grading Period

At its work session on July 28, 2020, the Gloucester County School Board voted to begin the 2020-21 school year on September 8, 2020 with fully remote learning for all students through the end of the first nine-week grading period.

During its work session, the School Board reviewed a variety of survey results from staff and families, as well as current community health information provided by the Three Rivers Health District and Virginia Department of Health. This information included a discussion of the current impact of COVID-19 in the eastern region of Virginia, as well as Gloucester County, in particular.

The School Board acknowledged that a return to in-person instruction is most desirable for all; however, the health and safety of students, staff, and community had to be the top priorities when making its final decision for any return-to-school plan. Also at the School Board work session, staff introduced its proposed “Gloucester Learns Anywhere” framework, including a presentation on CANVAS, a comprehensive learning management system (LMS), which will be implemented consistently across all grade levels to facilitate school-family communication, access to learning materials, and both synchronous and asynchronous support for students.

In addition, the School Board reviewed several sample school schedules Robin M. Rice, Member At Large, Chairperson Elisa A. Nelson, York District, Vice-Chairperson Troy M. Andersen, Gloucester Point District George R. Burak, Abingdon District Brenda F. Mack, Member At Large Anita F. Parker, Petsworth District Darren P. Post, Ware District that will be refined further in the coming weeks. More detailed learning plans for Gloucester families, including expectations for remote teaching and learning, instructional supports for students and families, and device availability, will be shared in the coming weeks.

Preliminary details for students and families will be published on Tuesday, August 4, with additional information published on Tuesday, August 11. Throughout August, families will be able to contact staff at each of Gloucester’s schools, Monday-Thursday, from 7:30 AM – 4:30 PM for additional information, including new student registration. Each of the five elementary schools is eager to register new Kindergarten students, and families seeking preschool enrollment or other Early Childhood Education opportunities can visit https://gets.gc.k12.va.us/early-childhood-education for more information.
New Post on Money, Health, and Other Things! 

This week, Virginia Cooperative Extension will conclude its three-part series on diversity and inclusion and discuss whether or not the word “privilege” is a dirty word.

Attention Gloucester Businesses

Gloucester County is assessing the economic impacts to local businesses due to the the threat of COVID-19, in an effort to report them accurately to state and federal partners. Additional assistance may be available if the County reaches certain thresholds in overall impact. We ask all local business partners to report any economic impacts to Gloucester’s Business Recovery Coordinator, Sherry Spring, on a weekly basis so that we may better assist you. Please email reports every Friday by noon each week with any losses you incur.

Please go to the link below, save to your desktop and send your report to:  sspring@gloucesterva.info

For community food distribution and other resources, visit https://www.facebook.com/GloucesterResourceCouncil/
For more health-related information on COVID-19, visit the Virginia Department of Health's website at http://www.vdh.virginia.gov/coronavirus/
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Gloucester, Virginia 23061