Credit: Courtesy of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

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DCPS loosens COVID-19 rules

Before D.C. students return to the classroom on Aug. 29, kindergartners through high school seniors will be required to submit the results of a negative COVID-19 test, DCPS announced this week along with other changes to its COVID protocols. All students age 12 and older must also show proof of COVID vaccination.

This year, students who test positive will have to isolate at home for five days. But anyone exposed to the virus is not required to quarantine unless they show symptoms, according to DCPS’ revised guidelines, which are intended to align with updated guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Masking will remain optional in schools this year.

Mayor Muriel Bowser’s administration has emphasized the importance of COVID vaccines, as well as vaccinations that were required for students before the pandemic. D.C. is hosting vaccination days that they’re calling “Dose’Chella” throughout August and September. (Do the organizers of that California music festival know about the name?) 

CDC shakeup

CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky acknowledged this week that the agency’s response to the coronavirus pandemic fell short. She promised changes are coming, including quicker communication about scientific findings and the release of clearer guidelines. Walensky also wants to restructure the CDC’s communications office and websites and require agency leaders to spend at least six months on an outbreak response with the goal of addressing turnover that can cause knowledge gaps. 

Dr. Biden has COVID

First Lady Jill Biden tested positive for COVID-19 this week. She was experiencing “mild symptoms” Monday, according to her office, and is isolating at a private home in South Carolina. President Joe Biden had two bouts of COVID in the past month. He tested negative after Jill Biden’s infection. She was reportedly feeling “a bit better” Wednesday, but was still experiencing cold-like symptoms, CNN reports. She will stay in South Carolina until she has two negative COVID tests. 

Mitch Ryals (tips? mryals@washingtoncitypaper.com)

Editor’s note: In yesterday’s newsletter, we incorrectly stated that singer-songwriter Don McLean was dead. He is very much alive. We regret the error. Sorry, Don!

  • To see today’s COVID-19 data, visit our coronavirus tracker.
  • Happy birthday to the National Zoo’s panda cub, Xiao Qi Ji, who turns 2 on Sunday. He’ll celebrate with a fruitsicle cake at 9 a.m. [DCist]
  • Reporter Dave Statter, who has been covering issues with D.C.’s Office of Unified Communications for years, discusses his work and concerns with how 911 calls are dispatched. [DCist]
  • In a settlement with the Office of the Attorney General, Instacart must pay more than $2.5 million for unpaid sales tax and using employee tips to boost its bottom line. [OAG]

By City Paper staff (tips? editor@washingtoncitypaper.com)

Credit: Darrow Montgomery

Buwa Binitie Steps Down From DC Housing Finance Agency Board

Well-connected developer Buwa Binitie ended his eight-year tenure as DCHFA board chair. Mayor Bowser has […]

  • A new requirement that many D.C. child-care workers must have college degrees is going into effect following a federal court ruling, despite howls from some critics who believe it’s unnecessary and will drive up the costs of child care. Others see it as a key step for improving student outcomes. [DCist]
  • Need help understanding the at-large Council race? Here’s a helpful breakdown, outlining why voters will have to choose a non-Democrat for one seat (and why At-Large Councilmember Anita Bonds remains a heavy favorite to claim the other). [GGWash]

By Alex Koma (tips? akoma@washingtoncitypaper.com)

  • Disability advocates discuss their experiences dining in D.C., from menu visibility to physical access to spaces. [Washingtonian]
  • Shaw taco spot Cortez has closed and will soon be replaced by new, family-owned Ethiopian restaurant Broz Dynasty. [Eater]
  • Visit El Tamarindo this weekend for Bruncheo, a boozy brunch featuring a live DJ, unlimited mimosas, and breakfast pupusas. [Resy]
  • Tomorrow: Grab a delicious baked good and support reproductive rights at Bakers for Reproductive Justice’s bake sale in Cleveland Park. [Twitter]

By City Paper staff (tips? editor@washingtoncitypaper.com)

Logic Comes Home, World Reggae Fest, and More Music for Aug. 18–25

Stenchcore from Hellshock, noise pop from Sleigh Bells, and gorgeous sounds from Florist keep the […]

Credit: Jalen Best

Protests Don’t Need Trademarks: Moechella Lives On

Justin “Yaddiya” Johnson confirms the name “Moechella” is not going anywhere and asks “Why would […]

  • Riversdale House Museum, a former plantation in Prince George’s County, is revisiting the stories it tells and bringing the lives and realities of the house’s enslaved workers to light. [DCist]
  • Get the details for tomorrow’s Open Doors Festival at the Kennedy Center [Twitter]

By Sarah Marloff (tips? smarloff@washingtoncitypaper.com)

  • A late shot from Jewell Loyd pushed the Seattle Storm ahead of the Mystics in the first game of their three-game playoff series. Game 2 is Sunday at 4 p.m. [Post, WTOP]
  • The winners of this year’s White Marlin Open reeled in a 77.5-pound fish—and a $4.5 million prize—earlier this month. [WTOP]
  • The Nats beat Juan Soto’s new team 3-1 with the help of a couple 9th inning runs off the Padres’ new bullpen acquisition (from Milwaukee) Josh Hader. [Federal Baseball]

By City Paper staff (tips? editor@washingtoncitypaper.com)

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