It’s Wednesday, September 30th - and NBC 6 has the top stories for the day.
No. 1 - The Miami-Dade School Board voted unanimously to start in-person learning Oct. 5 after Florida’s education commissioner demanded they open sooner than planned.
Not every student will return to the classroom at once. Pre-K students, kindergarteners, first graders, and students with special needs on a modified curriculum will return Monday. Friday, Oct. 2 will be a teacher planning day. In letters addressed to Alberto Carvalho and Robert Runcie, superintendents of Miami-Dade and Broward counties, education commissioner Richard Corcoran told the officials that they needed to reopen schools physically by Oct. 5, or else submit justifications as to why each individual school could not reopen.
No. 2 - The mayors of Miami-Dade County and the City of Miami attempted to clarify the new regulations under the state's phase 3 reopening Tuesday, while also urging people to continue to wear face masks to stop the spread of coronavirus.
Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez and Miami Mayor Francis Suarez held separate news conferences Tuesday to discuss what's changed after Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis moved the entire state to Phase 3 on Friday. DeSantis issued an order allowing restaurants and other businesses across the state to immediately reopen at full capacity under Phase 3. The order prevents cities and counties from ordering them to close or operate at less than half-capacity, unless they can justify a closure for economic or health reasons.
No. 3 - The first debate between President Donald Trump and Democratic challenger Joe Biden deteriorated into a bitter showdown Tuesday as the president repeatedly interrupted his opponent with angry — and personal — taunts that sometimes overshadowed the sharply different visions each man has of a nation facing historic crises.
In the most chaotic presidential debate in recent memory, Trump refused to condemn white supremacists who have supported him, telling one such group known as Proud Boys to “stand back, stand by.” There were also heated clashes over the president's handling of the pandemic, the integrity of the election results, deeply personal attacks about Biden's family and how the Supreme Court will shape the future of the nation’s health care. But it was the belligerent tone that was persistent, somehow fitting for what has been an extraordinarily ugly campaign. The two men frequently talked over each other with Trump interrupting, nearly shouting, so often that Biden eventually snapped at him, “Will you shut up, man?”
No. 4 - Just under two months ago, the Miami Heat were the fifth seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs with critics wondering if head coach Erik Spoelstra’s team would be able to make it out of their first round series.
Wednesday, the Heat will be one of the last two teams standing inside the NBA bubble playing in the league’s Finals for the sixth time in the last 15 seasons - and couldn’t care less what the critics are saying now. Now, the Heat turn their attention toward another legendary basketball team they’ll see for the first time in playoff history - a Los Angeles Lakers team, led by former Heat superstar LeBron James, seeking their 17th title. Game 1 tips off Wednesday night at 9 p.m. from the league’s bubble in Orlando.
No. 5 - Amid the debate over the pace of the state's reopenings, some doctors and nurses in South Florida are preparing for a possible increase in the number of coronavirus cases that could lead to another wave of patients at hospitals.
Lotta Siegel, a veteran nurse at Memorial Regional West, caught the virus from her son after he attended a birthday party. She said she's worried about the shift in attitudes toward COVID-19. Equally troubling, Siegel said, is the upcoming flu season and the moment the two viruses meet and people begin to show up at hospitals. To hear more from medical professionals about their concerns, click here for a report from NBC 6 anchor Carlos Suarez.
No. 6 - Weatherwise, The rain will be arriving by Wednesday afternoon in South Florida and sticking around for what could be a wet weekend. Keep your NBC 6 app handy for push alerts on any severe weather as well as First Alert Doppler 6000.