As the pandemic abruptly turned life upside down around the world, roughly a million public school kids in NYC were thrust into a wildly inconsistent learning environment, with repeated openings and closings of school buildings and systemwide shifts to online learning as COVID-19 rates surge.,While education officials promise to reopen schools this fall for full-time learning again, many New York City parents and students are calling for more than academic recovery, but a reckoning with the disrupted school system’s mental health toll on kids.,A Year Of Anxiety And Turmoil In the short term after Mayor Bill de Blasio announced that public school buildings were closing on March 16th, 2020 and students were shifting to remote learning, some kids said they initially celebrated a break from school.,Disparate Impacts For New York City’s public school system, whose enrollment is 41% Latino, 26% Black, 16% Asian and 15% white, the deadly toll of the pandemic has been acutely felt: “During the first five months of the pandemic, an estimated 4,200 of 4 million children in the state lost a parent or caregiver to coronavirus, a rate of more than one out of every 1,000, according to a report by the United Hospital Fund and Boston Consulting Group released at the end of September,” with more than half of those affected children residents of the Bronx, Brooklyn or Queens, according to Gotham Gazette, which reported the pandemic has disportionately taken parents away from Black and Hispanic families: 1 out of every 600 Black children, and 1 out of every 700 Hispanic children have lost a parent or caregiver, compared to 1 out of 1,400 Asian children and 1 out of 1,500 white children in New York.,The public school student population is also primarily low-income, a point which was hammered home last spring when the city Department of Education had to scramble to outfit hundreds of thousands of families with devices for remote learning.

They backed it up with a plus-136 run differential (a fairly absurd figure across just 60 games), and then in the postseason went 13-5 en route to winning the World Series for the first time since 1988.,Because of the still ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, fans weren't permitted to attend MLB games last season until the very last rounds of the playoffs.,The plan right now is for fans to be in attendance at spring training games and regular season games, albeit in limited numbers and in accordance with local guidelines.,Last season, no fans attended any regular season Astros games even as they advanced as far as the ALCS, so they've yet to hear about their transgressions in the typical manner.,Last season, the Padres busted out in a big way, as they won at a .617 clip -- the best win percentage in franchise history -- and returned to the playoffs for the first time since 2006.

Perry Minasian’s first winter as the Angels’ general manager netted at least seven new players who will, barring injury, be a part of the big league roster.,Among the position players, the Angels picked up Jose Iglesias to be their new everyday shortstop, Dexter Fowler to be their right fielder (at least until Jo Adell is ready) and Kurt Suzuki to be the backup catcher.,After Ohtani agreed to a two-year deal earlier this month, agent Nez Balelo said Ohtani has taken his offseason workouts to a higher level, in an effort to move past the struggles and injuries of the past two years.,The Angels tossed Adell in the deep end last year, and months later Manager Joe Maddon conceded that the 21-year-old probably wasn’t ready.,He’s had a winter to work on the things he did wrong last year, and now he’ll go into spring training with some experience and the challenge to prove that he is still the super prospect he was supposed to be.

He’s the newest member of the U.S. Men’s National Team but if you have been following the upper echelons of domestic soccer in recent weeks, Tristan Blackmon’s name already may seem familiar.,Three days before Christmas, Blackmon and LAFC were beaten 2-1 by Tigres UANL of Mexico in the CONCACAF Champions League Final also played in Orlando, in a bubble, amid the COVID-19 crisis.,Bob Bradley, the LAFC coach and former coach of the U.S. national team, had cautioned the LAFC players about letting Tigres get a fast break going in transition.,So now Blackmon finds himself competing for a spot on the national team, which is quite an honor, too.,Blackmon is one of 38 players from whom Berhalter will choose and the only new one added to the senior roster of World Cup eligibles.

Hours after landing in Brisbane, where the most dramatic of series in recent memory seeks closure, Josh Hazlewood sounded out a warning to the Indians: “We will be extremely dangerous in Gabba.,Months before the schedule of the series was fixed, Paine had requested Cricket Australia to start the series in Brisbane, before flinging a tongue-in-cheek dart at Virat Kohli: “Maybe we can get a pink-ball Test (in Brisbane) if he’s in a good mood.”,Like every arena in Australia, Gabba has a unique characteristic.,But not the Gabba, thanks chiefly to the father-son pair of Kevin Mitchell senior and junior, who nursed and nurtured the ground for close to four decades, before Mitchell junior retired in 2017.,Only Bellerive Oval, which has not hosted half as many Tests as the Gabba, has fewer double hundreds in Australia.