Thursday July 16, 2020

Stephanie Busin, Hendry County School Board Chairperson announced that Hendry County School District’s start date will be delayed until August 17th in order to provide additional time for the district and school leadership to SAFELY meet the Florida Department of Education’s mandate to offer a traditional school education model option. Hendry County Health Department Administrator Joseph Pepe is still scheduled to be in attendance at the July 21st meeting to discuss community-specific COVID-19 information with the Board and community. The Palm Beach County school board unanimously approved Superintendent Dr. Donald Fennoy’s plan to start the 2020-2021 school year with remote learning. The plan the board approved also includes guidelines for when students will return to school. Traditional classes can resume in Palm Beach County when the county enters phase 2 of reopening. The school board will meet again next Wednesday, July 22. On that date, they are expected to determine a start date for the school year. Board members were in agreement that starting on August 10 is not realistic.

School is set to start for Lake Okeechobee area students. Many of them will have to rely on access to internet, thanks to the restrictions from COVID-19. Many parents, teachers and advocates are beginning to speak up, about the digital divide that exits in some local area. Tammy Jackson-Moore is used to speaking up on behalf of the residents of Belle Glade, Pahokee, and South Bay on a myriad of issues that might come up that face the community Jackson-Moore said. Right now, she says? One of the biggest issues is children’s access to education. Tammy added even if children have internet access some families didn’t have enough materials. For instance, there maybe 5 children in the household, but only 2 Chromebooks available for student access, provided by the schools. Moore says many of the Glades area residents are grateful for the leaders in the community are helping to make a way.

The Clewiston Cougars had their first conditioning yesterday, in the fields near the John Boy Auditorium in Clewiston! On the West side of the County, The LaBelle Longhorns are holding Registrations for the 2020 Season! Matt Rentz is the President of the organization, and he will be coaching the 7 and 8 year olds this year. Rentz says, all girls and boys between the ages of 5 and 14 are welcome to come register to cheer or play football for the Longhorns.  All children must live in either Hendry, Glades, or Collier County and have a great team attitude.  Rentz, like everyone else in the world right now, recognizes that COVID-19 has placed some hurdles in the way, but he says, your LaBelle Longhorns are taking precautions to ensure the safety of the children.  

Walmart will require customers to wear face coverings at all of its namesake and Sam’s Club stores. The company said the policy will go into effect on Monday to allow time to inform stores and customers. Currently about 65% of its more than 5,000 stores and clubs are located in areas where there is already some form of government mandate on face coverings. The retailer also said it will create the role of health ambassador at its Walmart stores and will station them near the entrance to remind customers without masks of its new requirements. These workers, who will be wearing black polo shirts, will receive special training to “help make the process as smooth as possible for customers.”

Hendry County Sheriff’s Office Major Crimes Unit is currently investigating a shooting in the Harlem community of Clewiston. A shooting occurred at approximately 1:30am on July 16, 2020 in or around the 800 block of the Harlem Gardens apartments. The shooting victims are being treated for their injuries, which are not considered life threatening at this time. Major Crime Investigators are following up on all leads.  Anyone with any information should contact Hendry County Sheriff’s Office at 863-674-5600.

Crime Stoppers of Palm Beach County is searching for Marcos Alonso. His last known address is Bethune Street, Belle Glade. He is wanted for First Degree Murder and another felony charge. If you have any information on the whereabouts of Jose Alonso, contact Crime Stoppers of Palm Beach County.