Students to Return To Campus; HYAK Gets 1.6 Million for Rural Development; Low COVID-19 Count for Lane County; Successful Vaccination Clinic

Students to Return To Campus

Siuslaw Middle School and Siuslaw High School will transition to on-campus instruction beginning Monday, March 8th.  In a release yesterday Siuslaw Superintendent Andy Grzeskowiak described the move.  Each School will have live instruction phases in the morning for about half of the students and the other half will have live-streaming sessions in the afternoon.  The students will be broken down into cohorts A and B with Monday and Tuesday Morning hosting cohort A and Wednesday and Thursday morning hosting cohort B.  Grzeskowiak has said that roughly 25% of families has selected to stay in the comprehensive distance learning.  Those students will attend the afternoon Live-streaming sessions.  All students will then meet for live streaming sessions on Friday.  Under this plan cohort A students will be on campus March 8th and 9th and cohort B’s first day back on campus will be Wednesday, March 10.

HYAK Gets 1.6 Million for Rural Development

Hyak, Florence’s start up fiber interenet company was recently awarded 1.6 million dollars as part of the FCC’s Rural Digital Opportunity Fund.  The money will go to increase the fiber network in the Siuslaw region of Florence and Mapleton.  Areas like Indian Creek, Swisshome, Brickerville and Sweet Creek Road will be the focus as areas that have generally been served by satellite only or limited DSL services.  According to Hyak CEO Robbie Wright this could bring high speed internet to roughly 1200 homes and extending the fiber network will take up to 6 years to complete.

Low COVID-19 Count for Lane County

Lane County Public health only recorded 14 positive cases of the Coronavirus yesterday.  This is the lowest single day total in almost a year of COVID-19 infections.  Statewide there were 276 new cases and 27 new deaths to report.  The state did exceed the 1 million mark in doses yesterday and is not at 1,019,767 total first and second doses.  Overall the state is reporting a 17% increase in cases for the past week through February 28.  There was also a sharp increase in COVID-19 testing.

Successful Vaccination Clinic

It was well organized with plenty of room for social distancing.  That is how one person described the Vaccination clinic yesterday at the Florence Events Center.  Jackie Beverage say she was able to register online and reserve her spot as one of the 1000 recipients of the coronavirus vaccine.

“Once you get inside you get a clipboard with your form to fill out, go in there’s plenty of seats for waiting and then they direct you to one of the people that is doing the vaccinations.”

Beverage says there is then a 15 minute waiting period while they observe you to make sure there are no severe side effects.  LCPH recommends that if you are interested in getting the vaccine and currenty fit into the age category of 65+ you can go to to register.   Members of Lane County Search and Rescue administered the shots and volunteers from CERT help with organization and traffic flow.