COVID-19 Community Report -Feb 9th, 2021 - Speaking With John Bowes Superintendent for DJUSD

This month, I'm doing a series on the return to in-person instruction in area schools. This is Part 1, and future episodes will feature teachers, parents, and hopefully students.

My guest for Episode 51, which airs Feb. 9, 2021 is Dr. John Bowes, who has served as superintendent for the Davis Joint Unified School District since July 2016. For the past 30 years, he has led thousands of certificated, classified staff and students throughout the state, working to promote 21st century teaching and learning; to create safe and welcoming campuses; to close achievement and opportunity gaps, and to further the work of diversity, equity and inclusion.

I want to note we recorded this interview last week, on the heels of a school board meeting that lasted until 12:30 am—just one of many long meetings in recent weeks—and in the midst of a several-day website outage that’s part of a widespread external platform problem.

The last time I interviewed John was March 2020, at the beginning of the pandemic, and we spoke then about the rapidly evolving logistics of shifting to virtual instruction. I don’t think any of us then could have predicted how just how challenging this year would be, or the kinds of stress it would place on the district and all its parts - admin, teachers, students, and parents/guardians/caregivers. And now we’re at a place where insistent calls to return to in-person instruction are butting up against public health orders that urge continued caution, and DJUSD is faced with decisions that bring challenges at every turn. 

Tune in Tuesday at noon to hear more about where the District is in its planning, and what happens next. I'll also highlight news from the City and County regarding testing and vaccinations.