News to Know for April 1: Vice President Pence Visit; 1,250 COVID-19 cases in Va.; Inmates, employees in Goochland test positive; Henrico grading plans; RPS survey for laptops; Cool, breezy with morning clouds

News to Know for April 1: Vice President Pence Visit; 1,250 COVID-19 cases in Va.; Inmates, employees in Goochland test positive; Henrico grading plans; RPS survey for laptops; Cool, breezy with morning clouds
Vice President Mike Pence is scheduled to visit the Walmart Gordonsville Distribution Center on April 1.

RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - Here’s a quick look at our top headlines to help get you out the door.

Morning Clouds, Cool and Breezy

Decreasing clouds today with a cool NE breeze. It’ll be chilly again.

Morning clouds, partly or mostly sunny in the afternoon. Clouds and rain hang through midday along the bay. Lows in the low 40s, highs in the mid-50s.

Morning clouds, then midday and afternoon sun. Cool and breezy.

Coronavirus Updates

As the coronavirus continues to dominate headlines, NBC12 put everything you need to know in one place to make it easier to stay up to date.

On Sunday, as deaths in New York state surpassed 1,000, President Donald Trump extended stay-at-home recommendations for a month in an abrupt turnaround from his previous stance.

Coronavirus
Coronavirus (Source: WBRC)

The move came after Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said up to 200,000 Americans could die and millions become infected if lockdowns and social distancing did not continue.

Trump also issued an order Friday that seeks to force General Motors to produce ventilators for coronavirus patients under the Defense Production Act.

Virginia Cases and Updates

The Virginia Department of Health reports 1,250 confirmed COVID-19 cases, 27 deaths and 165 hospitalizations throughout the state.

On Monday, Governor Ralph Northam implored Virginians to stay at home as the coronavirus continues to spread. It began immediately and will last until June 10 unless rescinded or amended.

Virginia Governor Ralph Northam announced Monday people must remain in their home unless they have to go out for food, supplies, essential work and medical care.
Virginia Governor Ralph Northam announced Monday people must remain in their home unless they have to go out for food, supplies, essential work and medical care. (Source: Associated Press)

Restaurants are still only allowed to be open for takeout and delivery. Other stores may stay open, as long as they have fewer than 10 customers inside.

The order also directs all higher-education institutions in the state to stop in-person classes and instruction.

Pence Visit

Vice President Mike Pence is scheduled to visit the Walmart Gordonsville Distribution Center on April 1.

Pence is expected to tour the facility and highlight the distribution center’s supply chain operations.

United States Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue will also be in attendance.

Richmond Deaths

The Richmond City Health District is reporting the first two deaths of city residents related to COVID-19.

Health officials said both men were in their 70s and died in the hospital. Both suffered from underlying, chronic conditions.

Officials said both men had recently spent time working in New Jersey. Greyhound said the employees, a driving instructor and driver manager, participated in an out-of-town, routine training.

The Richmond City Health District is working to determine who may have come into contact with them.

Chesterfield’s First Death

The Chesterfield Health District has announced the first death in the district related to COVID-19.

Officials said the patient was a man in his 60s.

The Chesterfield Health District covers Chesterfield and Powhatan counties, along with the city of Colonial Heights.

Inmates and Employees Test Positive

Officials also said three VADOC employees and one contractor have tested positive, as well.

All VADOC facilities are operating on a modified lockdown in an effort to minimize contact between groups of offenders.

Officials said Virginia Correctional Enterprises is manufacturing tens of thousands of masks for staff and inmates.

Grading Plans In Henrico

Henrico County Public Schools have announced its grading plans and the next steps moving forward after schools were forced to close due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

School officials said in most cases that students will be moving onto the next grade level. If grade retention was being considered for an elementary school student prior to the close, and with the school team and parents in agreement, those discussions may continue.

(Source: HCPS)

The Virginia Department of Education is also providing school divisions with a range of options for handling missed work due to the closure.

For a full breakdown of each grade level and specification, CLICK HERE.

RPS Laptops

Richmond Public Schools Superintendent Jason Kamras announced Tuesday afternoon the launching of a new online survey for parents to fill out who have children who need the devices and lack access to technology outside of school operations. Kamras says having laptops will help them complete schoolwork while campuses are closed due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis.

(Source: unsplash.com)

RPS plans on distributing the 8,000 devices currently owned by the school system in addition to purchasing between 8,000 to 10,000 laptops for students who don’t have access to online learning resources at home.

Purchasing laptops will cost $3.5 million, which is $350 per laptop, along with the security software and the insurance that comes with it. Kamras says RPS will partially fund the program by reallocating unused funds from transportation and energy costs.

To fill out the survey, click HERE.

Rosie’s Free Meals

Rosie’s Gaming Emporium in Richmond, along with the other locations across Virginia, will be making meals for those on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic response.

Rosie’s will employ the kitchen staff to provide 20,000 meals for Virginians on the frontlines as part of the Rosie’s Cares Community Heroes Meal program.

Rosie's Gaming Emporium in Richmond
Rosie's Gaming Emporium in Richmond (Source: NBC12)

The meals will serve police officers, doctors, nurses, firefighters, grocery store employees and all those who have stepped up to serve fellow Virginians.

Starting on April 1, Rosie’s will be giving away the meals in consultation with local officials and businesses serving the public.

Final Thought

When stress is at its highest, just know it can only go down - Tom Rataj

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