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A place for updates on the pandemic.

Wear a mask everyone!

Banner Photo: Chairman Ramon Valazez, left, and Clerk of the Board Julie Castaneda listen to seven people who spoke before the emergency meeting on Dec. 4, 2020. 


Free COVID Tests Available Now at

Americans can now order up to 4 rapid COVID-19 test kits from, free of charge. 

The push to distribute the 500 million free  tests was announced back in December as part of President Biden's Winter COVID-19 Plan to address a surge in coronavirus infections and increased demand for testing.

Ordering your free COVID tests is fairly simple and takes less than a minute:

  1. Visit and select the option to "Order Free At-Home Tests."
  2. Enter your name, shipping address and email address (if you want to receive shipping updates).
  3. Click the green "Check Out Now" button and you're done.

The tests will be shipped via USPS and will arrive  about 7-12 days after the order date. 

At-home rapid tests are also available at pharmacies and online retailers, and as of Jan. 15, health insurance will cover the cost of these at-home tests.

Kevin MurphyStaff Member
Journalist Product Manager

Continental Elementary School District quarantines classroom

Last week, CESD Superintendent Roxana Rico-Beaucage announced that they sent a classroom of fifth-graders into remote learning after six students turned up positive for COVID-19.

Reporter Jamie Verwys talks with Principal DeAnna Cuevas about how the situation unfolded.

Here is a story from The Washington Post that details some of the issues a school board in Maryland is dealing with as the omicron variant surges.

How do you feel SUSD and CESD have handled issues brought on by the pandemic?


Local school districts change quarantine policies

Sahuarita High School students on campus Aug. 2. (Jamie Verwys photo)
Sahuarita High School students on campus Aug. 2. (Jamie Verwys photo)

Sahuarita Unified School and Continental Elementary School Districts are following new COVID-19 guidance from the CDC regarding quarantining and isolation but decline to adopt mask requirements.

Reporter Jamie Verwys describes the updated policies and talks with SUSD Superintendent Manny Valenzuela about the changes made.

Here is an article from the Chicago Tribune that details a standoff over in-person learning between the school districts and the teachers union.

Have you had to quarantine, and if so, what did you do to pass the time in isolation?


Pima County passes mask mandate

On Tuesday, the Pima County Board of Supervisors voted to require masks in indoor public places where six feet of distance is not easily maintained, but businesses don't have to enforce it.

Editor Dan Shearer describes how HB2770, signed into law in April by Gov. Doug Ducey, nullifies enforcement efforts and explains how the board passed the resolution.

Supervisor Steve Christy was one of two county supervisors to oppose the mask mandate resolution, calling the decision “pure political theater and grandstanding and virtue signaling with a mandate that has no teeth.”

How do you feel about the county mask mandate? Is the decision purely politically driven or made in the best interest of public health?