Morning Lookout: Progress on religious holidays; ‘lifelong living’ for adults with disabilities
Hiya, Lookout friends! It’s Monday, Sept. 26, and a marine layer-y start should give way to mostly sunny skies around Santa Cruz County, with highs ranging from around 90 in the hills to the 70s closer to the bay.
Leading off as we head into a new week of school and work is Hillary Ojeda, who reports on moves by the County Office of Education and local school districts to take religious holidays into consideration when scheduling — thanks in part to one mom’s persistence.
Along Pogonip Creek, meanwhile, a so-called “pocket community” for families with adult children with disabilities is celebrating the first anniversary of residents moving in, and Thomas Sawano paid Coastal Haven and its Common Roots Farm a visit.
Wallace Baine also runs down artists to watch at the upcoming Open Studios tour, and in our Community Voices opinion section, one local woman describes how kayaking in Elkhorn Slough changed her life.
Before we get to the headlines, though, I wanted to let you know about a great chance to support both local journalism and a great local organization. Become an annual Lookout member now and 10% of the price of your membership will support the O’Neill Sea Odyssey’s Adam Webster Fund, a program that funds educational experiences for individuals with physical and cognitive disabilities. This program needs our help in ramping back up after being hit hard by the pandemic. It gets better — that donation will be matched by O’Neill Sea Odyssey donors. Click the links below for more info and to join Lookout.
Now, to the headlines!
Prom or Passover? Schools making progress on accommodating the diversity of Santa Cruz County
Debra Feldstein, a mother of two high school students, wants her children’s religious holidays to be considered as important as any other child’s. That’s why each year her children have been in school, she has been asking school officials to plan events around Jewish religious holidays, and those of all religious minority groups. Now, after several updates, she’s feeling cautiously optimistic. Hillary Ojeda has the details.
➤ COVID, MENTAL HEALTH AND SECURITY CHALLENGES: School superintendent Faris Sabbah reflects and looks ahead to next four years
Coastal Haven, a lifelong home for people with disabilities, rings in its first anniversary
Tucked against Pogonip Creek, a cluster of nine colorful bungalows forms Coastal Haven — a “pocket community” for 11 families who have adult children with disabilities. The hope, its founders Heidi Cartan and Philippe Habib say, is that this will be the children’s homes for a lifetime. Read Thomas Sawano’s story here.
➤ LOOKOUT GUIDES: From neighborhoods to parenting, get more connected to Santa Cruz County
And just like that, the final week of September is upon us. We’ve got more up our sleeves here at Lookout, so now would be a good time to make sure you’re following us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram so you don’t miss anything. We also offer breaking news text alerts and a number of other newsletters — including Lily Belli on Food, coming Tuesday — so click here for more on that.
None of our content is possible without community support, so if you’re not already, please consider becoming a Lookout member. And to all of our members, thank you! We appreciate each and every one of you.
Now get out there and show this Monday who’s boss!
Lookout Santa Cruz