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TimesOC: Back to campus for high school athletes in one Orange County district

Marina High School football players work out on campus Tuesday in Huntington Beach.
Marina High School football players work out on campus Tuesday in Huntington Beach. The Huntington Beach Union High School District allowed sports workouts to resume this week.
(Scott Smeltzer / Staff Photographer)

Good afternoon, and welcome to the TimesOC newsletter. It’s Wednesday, Aug. 26.

My name is David Carrillo Peñaloza, the author of the TimesOC newsletter and an editor for Los Angeles Times Community News.

While most high school students in Orange County are at home staring at a computer screen, having begun the school year with distance learning, athletes in the Huntington Beach Union High School District started working out on campus this week.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, students in the district won’t be allowed to return to campus for in-person learning when school opens on Sept. 2. Yet, students involved in sports or performing arts programs are the exception when it comes to being on campus now.

Reporter Andrew Turner wrote about the district’s athletic reopening plan, which includes a litany of protocols. Facial coverings are required when stepping on campus, temperatures will be taken, 6 feet of social distancing will be monitored, and there will be limits on the number of athletes and groups working out together.

The district, home to Edison, Fountain Valley, Huntington Beach, Marina, Ocean View and Westminster high schools, rolled out on Monday the first of three phases for its reopening guidelines. Coaches and players are already thinking about the start of the season. The games are supposed to begin in December.

Marina High School football players go through agility drills on campus Tuesday in Huntington Beach.
Marina High School football players go through agility drills on campus Tuesday in Huntington Beach.
(Scott Smeltzer / Staff Photographer)

The big question is when will students be allowed to come back inside the classroom? That could be after Labor Day weekend.

Reporter Sara Cardine has the latest on how soon many Orange County schools can reopen their physical campuses, and that depends on whether the county can remain off California’s coronavirus watch list. The state removed the county on Sunday, and it has to stay off the list for 14 straight days.

Even if the county remains off the monitoring list during that time span, schools might not be ready to welcome students and teachers back on Sept. 8.

“This is expected to be a year of continuous adjustment to changing conditions,” said Russell Lee-Sung, the superintendent of the Newport-Mesa Unified School District, which includes 17,340 students from Newport Beach and Costa Mesa. “Adjusting what and how we teach in a remote setting or switching to modified in-person instruction will also be a significant challenge.”

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A revolt inside the O.C. Catholic church

There has been a falling out between a circle of influential Orange County Catholic philanthropists and Bishop Kevin Vann, which stems from Vann removing them from the board of an independent foundation and a money shortfall.

Reporter Harriet Ryan wrote that there’s a revolt inside the Orange County church that has burned all the way to the Vatican while remaining largely hidden from the diocese’s 1.3 million rank-and-file Catholics.

Movie-goers enjoy “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off” at a temporary drive-in theater called SoCal Wheels & Reels.
Movie-goers enjoy “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off” at a temporary drive-in theater called SoCal Wheels & Reels on Friday in Huntington Beach.
(Raul Roa / Staff Photographer)

Ultimate drive-in show on Huntington Harbour

If you want to listen to musicians and stand-up comedians, and then watch a movie on an 18-foot-tall screen overlooking the ocean, SoCal Wheels & Reels offers that kind of entertainment on Friday nights in Huntington Beach.

Reporter Matt Szabo featured Matthew Cramer, the man behind the three different shows at Stoney Harbour, 3901 Warner Ave. The Friday showings will run through the end of October. The fee is $100 per car and $18 per bike. The live music and comedy are from 6 p.m. and 8 p.m., with the movie following the last act.

Want to experience the newspaper with a digital subscription?

You can now view the actual Los Angeles Times Community News publications online with our e-newspapers. Here’s Wednesday’s edition of the Daily Pilot and Sunday’s edition of TimesOC. Hopefully this gives you the same feel as reading the newspaper in your hands.

Initiative aims to increase Black representation at UCI

A year ago, UC Irvine had the lowest percentage of Black undergraduates in the 10-campus UC system.

To improve on the 3.3% Black student population, UCI has launched the Black Thriving Initiative. Reporter Teresa Watanabe wrote that the death of George Floyd while in police custody inspired the school’s new effort to build a thriving campus climate for Black students, faculty and staff.

Get in touch

Have any questions or suggestions for the TimesOC newsletter? Email me at david.carrillo@latimes.com.

If you want to sign up for the newsletter that is delivered to your inbox every Monday, Wednesday and Friday, visit latimes.com/oc-newsletter.

You can also follow me on Twitter @ByDCP and tweet me questions.

See you Friday afternoon.

Orange County's Best: TimesOC's Readers' Choice 2020

Readers can vote on their best products and services in Orange County at latimes.com/timesoc/voting. Voting starts Sept. 1 and ends Sept. 30.