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Western Michigan company turns to Spanish-speaking workers to ease labor shortage

ZEELAND, MI – Denise Navarro starts her day as most of the production group managers at Gentex Corporation, where she oversees around 25 second-shift workers who manufacture mirrors for the Zeeland-based automotive supplier.

But when she registers with her employees, there is a difference: the conversation is in Spanish.

“I think language shouldn’t be a barrier,” said Navarro, who is bilingual and part of Gentex’s new effort to recruit Spanish-speaking workers as it struggles to fill vacancies amid a shortage. labor force that has hurt businesses in Western Michigan.

Historically, Gentex has required employees to have a basic knowledge of the English language. But the company stepped down at the end of last year as it found itself with more than 400 vacant positions amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The idea, says President and CEO Steve Downing, is to tap into a new pool of workers.

“What we knew was that we were running out of workers,” he said, “and we had to get creative to solve the problem.”

So what started late last year with four Spanish-speaking workers on a third-shift production line has turned into around 50 such employees working across multiple production lines and shifts, Downing said. Bilingual supervisors like Navarro are there to lend a hand.

To launch the initiative, Gentex translated and printed work instructions in Spanish and created training videos in Spanish. Employees who speak Spanish and English have been given the opportunity to take on supervisory positions, Downing said.

“We have proven that it works – now how do we evolve it,” he said. “Instead of 50 people, what are those 500 people like? This is sort of the process we are currently undergoing.

Gentex pays a starting wage of $ 15 an hour for first shift workers and recently increased its starting wage for second and third shift employees to $ 16 an hour.

But, in a job market where $ 15 an hour and more is increasingly common, Gentex says it’s trying to differentiate itself with other perks. The company, for example, recently began offering a $ 5,000 stock award to hourly employees with one year of service.

Gentex has approximately 5,300 employees.

“Why don’t we try to attract people who want to stay longer instead of just competing on a pure hourly basis,” said Downing, whose company now prints its newsletter in Spanish and displays ads in Spanish on televisions in the lobby of the company.

Inside Gentex’s Centennial Street factory, where machines roar as workers make auto-dimming mirrors and other electronics for the auto industry, Navarro walks past an assembly line she oversees .

The 26-year-old West Ottawa Public Schools graduate, who is now double-enrolled at Grand Rapids Community College and Ferris State University, said she spent her shift answering employee questions, to have one-on-one conversations with workers and guide them through the production process. .

“A lot of my job will be just asking them how it’s going,” said Navarro, who has been with Gentex for five years. “Is there something they might be having trouble understanding.”

She says the company’s pressure to hire more Spanish-speaking workers is affecting near her home.

Her parents, Martin and Adriana, moved from Chicago to West Michigan when she was 11. And because they were having trouble with English, they couldn’t find a job in a place like Gentex, she said.

“My parents would have liked to apply here, but due to their limited English they couldn’t do it,” said Navarro, whose parents are in their mid-fifties. “Now they are even thinking of coming. “

The Spanish-speaking program is bringing new workers to Gentex, a publicly traded company that started in 1974. But the company still has a long way to go before its labor shortage is resolved, Downing said. .

“We are still missing 400 to 450 people from where we want to be,” he said. “Ironically, it’s very similar to the number of people we lost during the pandemic who kind of left the workforce.”

To attract Spanish-speaking workers, the company has placed notice boards in Spanish throughout western Michigan. Company officials have also sponsored and attended events such as the Grand Rapids Hispanic Festival, where Navarro discussed with attendees the opportunities within the company.

The company also hopes that employees will lend a hand in the recruiting effort.

“We do our best to recruit when employees recruit friends, family and people they know and recommend it as a place to work,” said Downing. “Obviously we do billboards and other campaigns. But what we really hope is that people recruit their friends and family because they tend to have longevity. “

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Parents concerned after 1,050 WCPS asked to be quarantined on Wednesday

BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (WBKO) – As of Wednesday, 1,050 Warren County public school students are in quarantine after being potentially exposed to COVID-19. According to data from the district’s website, there are currently 142 active cases among students.

In an interview on Tuesday, Superintendent Rob Clayton said he recognizes this is an issue so many students need to quarantine, which is one of the reasons he implemented a mask warrant. Monday.

“We have continuously monitored the data in terms of the number of positive COVID cases, but the number of quarantines associated with positive cases is also more problematic,” the superintendent said.

Recently, the CDC changed its guidelines to say that students were not considered “close contact” if they were wearing a face covering and were three feet or more apart at the time of contact. exhibition instead of the original six feet.

“Based on this change alone and the CDC’s advice alone, it would likely have halved the number of students currently quarantined,” Clayton explained. “As a school manager, as a parent, I find it essential that we do everything we can, in terms of implementing safety measures to ensure that we can continue with five days a week of in-person teaching. ”

Governor Andy Beshear also signed an executive order on Tuesday requiring all students in Kentucky to wear masks inside the school. Despite efforts to alleviate the problem of sending so many students home, parents still worry that their children are not getting the proper education they need.

“It’s a very important time in their life to get their education, and they can’t get it, they just have to go home and do nothing big,” said Jason Humble, parents of two college students. Warren County.

One of her daughters was asked to quarantine herself for ten days right after the second day of school. “We didn’t know who she was exposed to, she was just told to go home because she was exposed,” Humble said. “Then my second daughter, the second day, the next day, was also sent home. “

While they can do some of their work on Google Classroom, he said it’s not the same as teaching in person. “One of my daughters is taking an AP class, the other is taking a Spanish class, she doesn’t even know how to teach there,” Humble explained. “There is no choice or freedom for parents. “

Schools in Warren County began implementing the new mask mandate on Wednesday.

Copyright 2021 WBKO. All rights reserved.


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DHEC Measures Obituary (2021) – Gaffney, SC

COLUMBIA, SC The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) and the South Carolina Department of Education join forces to create and promote vaccine awareness and immunization opportunities for parents, students and staff for the 2021-2022 school year.

Across South Carolina, we are seeing a dramatic increase in the number of new cases of COVID-19, and the schools and activities around them will provide even more exposure opportunities for our children. The best way to protect the health of our children and loved ones is to get vaccinated, especially children 12-19 years old who will be in close contact with each other.

The DHEC and CDC also recommend that children and adults wear a mask in indoor public spaces, including schools, even if they are fully immunized. There is additional advice on the CDC website for families with vaccinated and unvaccinated members.

Immunization events are organized and scheduled statewide, with a focus on back-to-school events and high school sports. So far, 14 such events have taken place, including seven in schools, and a total of 395 doses have been administered. To find a local vaccine supplier near you, go to scdhec.gov/vaxlocator.

“Immunizing eligible children is a public health priority as we begin a new school year,” said Dr Edward Simmer, director of DHEC. “The COVID delta variant that we are tracking now is very contagious, and the best way to prevent your child or loved one from getting sick or requiring hospitalization is to get fully immunized and wear a mask inside. school. “

DHEC and SC’s Department of Education are committed to you and the health, well-being and success of your child. To better enable parents, students and staff to keep up with new school-related cases, starting August 10, we will resume updating the “staff and student cases” page on our website. We also recently updated our COVID-19 Vaccines for Children 12 and Older webpage.

“South Carolina students and educators deserve to teach and learn in a safe environment,” said Molly Spearman, state superintendent of education. “Getting vaccinated, wearing a face mask and following the appropriate mitigation strategies will allow us to have the most uninterrupted and normal school year possible.”

DHEC’s official COVID-19 safety guidelines for the 2021-22 school year are available on our website, which recommends universal masking inside schools and other safety measures. The masks are safe, do not interfere with learning, and have not been a barrier to socializing.

For parents looking for specific information on COVID-19 vaccines, the reputable resources below can help with a family’s decision-making process.

The Science Behind the COVID-19 Vaccine: FAQs for Parents (American Academy of Pediatrics); Also available in Spanish

COVID-19 vaccines for children and adolescents (CDC)

COVID-19 Vaccines for Children 12 Years and Older (DHEC)

VACCINATION CLINICS IN CHEROKEE COUNTY

Friday August 13 GHS stadium,

BHS stadium from 5 p.m.

Posted by The Gaffney Ledger on Aug 9, 2021.


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DEAN & NG WIN PRESIDENT’S AWARD FOR OUTSTANDING SERVICE

Two members of the Morris community at the University of Minnesota have won the University of Minnesota President’s Award for Outstanding Service: LeAnn Dean, director of the Briggs Library, and Peh Ng, chair of the Science and Mathematics Division and math teacher.

LeAnn Dean’s “Creative and Deep Dedication”

Dean has worked at the Briggs Library for over 30 years and she puts students first all the time. “In the operating principles of the Briggs Library,” explains Naomi Skulan, Metadata and Technical Services Coordinator at the Briggs Library, “LeAnn says student success is the library’s number one priority. She advocates for student representation in all aspects of campus life and urges campus leaders to listen to the needs of students. Skulan goes on to explain how Dean has helped the library evolve in response to student needs, expanding educational resources and affordable content, as well as advocating for student representation in the Collection Improvement Grants of the library.

Janet Schrunk Ericksen, Acting Chancellor, said: “LeAnn has served on a huge number of campus and university committees and task forces, and she has been instrumental in advancing several initiatives on campus. . “

Peh Ng — Driving Through Service

Peh NgNg’s proponents noted his many overlapping vectors of service: to students, to UMN Morris, and to the community and state as a whole. Stacey Parker Aronson, professor of Spanish and president of the Humanities Division, wrote about the myriad research opportunities that Ng offers to students. was then presented at the Undergraduate Research Symposium and at national and even international conferences.

Other proponents noted Ng’s extensive knowledge of campus politics, recruiting efforts, and networking meals. But leading through service goes beyond academia. Ng, along with research assistant students, has worked on a number of projects for the local community:

  • Optimized the Midwest Minnesota School District Bus Line.
  • Find the optimum performance of vehicles in the Minnesota Department of Transportation’s fleet.
  • Design a more efficient recycling program for Otter Tail County.
  • Redesign of the planning process for the Regional Fitness Center.

Nancy E. Carpenter, Emeritus Professor of Chemistry, succinctly sums up Ng’s approach by saying, “She has never forgotten why she serves and why she is an educator: her students. Even as a division president, research committee member, or governance committee member, she has in mind how she can make things better for students.

About the President’s Award for Outstanding Service

The University of Minnesota President’s Award for Outstanding Service was established in 1997 to recognize faculty and staff (current or retired) who have provided outstanding service to the University, its schools, colleges, departments, and its service units. Such service must go well beyond the usual duties of a professor or staff member and demonstrate an unusual commitment to the academic community.


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Schools requiring masks indoors | Local News

SALEM – School leaders are calling on all students and staff to wear masks to start the next school year 2021-22.

The school committee will hold a special meeting on Monday August 9 at 4 p.m. to review the health and safety protocols for the fall and with it the reopening of the school.

The district released a summary Thursday afternoon exploring the recommendations made on Monday evening. The statement begins with a warning: “The Delta variant is much more contagious,” wrote Superintendent Steve Zrike. “For every person who gets sick, they are more likely to spread it.”

“The goal of this recommendation is to ensure the safe opening of schools in September and to minimize disruption to learning for our students and their families,” Zrike wrote. “We remain confident and determined to fully open the school this fall with in-person learning for all students.”

To achieve this, Zrike recommends that all staff and students hide inside.

“Due to the level of contagiousness of this variant and the increased possibility for those who are vaccinated to have and spread the virus as a result of the variant, it is essential to reduce the introduction of small droplets and particles by ensuring what all individuals wear masks indoors and on our buses, ”Zrike wrote. “We have seen strong implementation in our schools last year.”

Masks would also be required for all family members, visitors and volunteers entering the school building. Symptom screening will continue and the district “still encourages meetings to be held outside,” Zrike wrote. Mask breaks will also be put in place. People indoors participating in a break “will be at least three feet apart and mask breaks will not last more than 10 minutes.”

The district will continue its weekly surveillance tests for all staff and students. Additionally, the launch of a state-level ‘Test to Stay’ program means those who are in close contact with a positive COVID-19 case can ‘participate in daily rapid tests and stay in school. Zrike wrote. “This is an important step in reducing the disruption if there are any positive cases this fall.” (Emphasis Zrike)

However, masks will not be required outdoors and all meals will be held outdoors weather permitting. “If eating takes place indoors, there will be a minimum of three feet of physical distance between individuals as well as additional ventilation in those spaces,” Zrike wrote.

“In addition to the above strategies, we continue to stress the importance of the vaccine as the most critical strategy to fight the virus,” Zrike wrote. “We are working with our partners to make it accessible to everyone in our community, in particular by organizing another vaccination clinic this Saturday, August 7. “

While the school committee will discuss school policies specifically on August 9, Zrike noted that the city’s health board is also meeting on Tuesday August 10 to discuss the city-wide strategy. A forum will also be organized to discuss plans to reopen schools on Tuesday August 24 from 5.30 p.m. to 6.30 p.m. Further details were not immediately clear.

“Last year, when we launched our reopening work, we put forward four core values: well-being, fairness, flexibility and community,” said Zrike. “We have seen our community come together to put our students first, live by those values ​​and demonstrate our ability to adapt as we learn more about the virus. “

To read the full letter in English (with Spanish available) and to register for the August 7 vaccination clinic, visit bit.ly/3Aip4HV.

To reply to this story or suggest a new one, contact Dustin Luca at 978-338-2523 or [email protected] Follow him on facebook.com/dustinluca or on Twitter @DustinLucaSN.

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French and Spanish families buy penthouses in London for £ 15million to secure places in top public schools

It doesn’t matter if the property isn’t perfect either, as long as it allows you to walk through the front door of the school. Real estate consultant Alexander Millett mentions a cottage across from Fox Primary that saw swarms of parents with young children when it went up for sale late last year – and sold in a grim foreclosure in February 2021 for 2 , £ 4million. “It was small, but people were willing to make it work because of the possibility of getting a place for their child in school,” he says.

And on Kensington Church Street, just behind The Ivy, St Mary Abbots’ “small, extremely popular, hopelessly oversubscribed and incredibly well located” state primary is a hotbed for competitive homebuyers. In this case, however, living next door or registering a newborn makes no difference.

“You should show up at the nearby church every Sunday and ideally donate large sums of money along with all of your spare time,” comments a practitioner who occasionally shared a bench with David Cameron. “He got a place for his daughter Nancy, even though they didn’t live in the parish. He did well introducing himself and reading to young children in the hall next door during services, ”she said. “It was a source of considerable anguish on Mumsnet.”


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Ascension Schools Hire 6 New District and School Leaders | Ascension

Ascension Parish public schools announced the appointment of six new district and school leaders last week.

Robyn Simmons is the new Child Protection and Attendance Supervisor; Brent Ramagost is the new Information Systems and Technology Supervisor; Nicole Elmore Joseph is the new director of Early College Option; Daniel “Keragan” McCready is the new Deputy Director of Dutchtown High; Kim Uzee is the new associate principal of East Ascension High School; and Mary Reenie Laginess is the new vice-principal of East Ascension High School.

“It is always an honor to recognize new leaders within this district – a district that always excels in its employees,” said Assistant Superintendent of Ascension Public Schools, A. Denise Graves. “Rising means reaching the top, and that is what we continue to do under the leadership of these exceptional new directors.”

CHILD WELL-BEING AND ASSISTANCE SUPERVISOR

Born in New Orleans, Simmons began her career in Ascension Public Schools in 2010 as an English teacher at Donaldsonville High School. At DHS, she was a career teacher, teacher mentor and master teacher before moving to Dutchtown High in 2013. She began teaching English at Dutchtown High and also served as a teacher mentor for the pedagogical leadership team, then Assistant Director. In 2019, Simmons became the Director of Early College Option. She remained in this position before being appointed Child Protection and Attendance Supervisor.

“I am so excited for this next chapter,” Simmons said. “This is an opportunity to ensure that we continue to uplift and succeed Ascension students.”

Simmons received a BA in Mass Communication and an MA in English from Jackson State University. She also earned a doctorate in educational leadership from the University of Southeast Louisiana.

INFORMATION SYSTEMS AND TECHNOLOGY SUPERVISOR

A graduate of Donaldsonville High School, Ramagost is a long-time member of Ascension Public Schools. In 2002, he started his 19-year professional career with the district as a computer technician. Most recently, he served as District Network Administrator, a position he has held since 2018.

“I am grateful to continue in this leadership role,” said Ramagost. “The IT department has always been such an honor to work with, and I’m thrilled to be leading this team. “

Ramagost graduated from Nicholls State University with a BS in Computer Information Systems in 2001. He lives in Gonzales with his wife Jessica and their daughter Cadence.

MAIN OF THE START OF COLLEGE OPTION

A native of Brusly, Joseph began his teaching career 19 years ago at Sherwood Middle School in Baton Rouge. She was an administrative intern in East Baton Rouge Parish, then Deputy Warden at Capitol Middle, Deputy Warden at Capitol Elementary and Principal at Melrose Elementary before moving to Ascension Parish. She started at Donaldsonville High School as a teacher mentor in 2013.

After a year, she became Deputy Director of DHS, a position she held for two years before becoming Associate Director in 2016.

“I couldn’t be here without the support of the Ascension Parish School Board,” said Joseph. “I couldn’t have excelled like I did without knowing that they would support me 100%.”

Joseph received a BA in Secondary Education and Social Sciences from Grambling State University and an MA in Educational Leadership from Southern University. She currently resides in Addis, with her husband, Christopher, and their three children Avery, Johnovan and Elle, as well as three bonus children: Christopher, Christiauna and Keshawn.

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ASSISTANT DIRECTOR OF DUTCHTOWN SECONDARY SCHOOL

A native of West Monroe, McCready began his Ascension career in 2011 as a social studies teacher and physical education coach at East Ascension High School. He was also the school’s deputy sports director, strength trainer for all sports and offensive football coordinator.

McCready transferred to Dutchtown High in 2017 to fill four positions for the school: physical education teacher, assistant athletic director, strength trainer and offensive coordinator. While serving at DTHS, he became department head and leader of the professional learning community.

McCready is active in the neighborhood outside of his roles. He is a member of the educational management team and an observer teacher. He is also working with administration to implement the Griffin Guardian mentoring program on the Dutchtown High campus. McCready also received the Strength of America award from the National Strength and Conditioning Association during his time in the district.

“I am honored and extremely touched by this opportunity to continue to serve our students, parents and stakeholders in this new leadership role,” said McCready.

McCready received a Bachelor of Education degree from Henderson State University with High Honors and a Master of Science degree from LSU. His wife, April, also works for the district as a teacher at Spanish Lake Elementary School. The couple have two daughters: Payton, a seventh grade student at Dutchtown Middle, and Audrey, a third grade student at Spanish Lake.

ASSOCIATE DIRECTOR OF ASCENSION EST SECONDARY SCHOOL

Uzee began her career in Ascension Public Schools as an English teacher for East Ascension High in 1999. In 2005, she became one of the district’s top four high school teacher coaches. After two years in this role, Uzee returned to teaching at East Ascension until she took on the role of deputy principal of the school in 2014.

“My whole career has been spent at East Ascension; this is my home, ”said Uzee. “It is my commitment to you that I will do everything in my power to make sure every student succeeds. “

Uzee obtained a bachelor’s degree in English and an alternative certification from LSU. She also earned a master’s degree from Southeastern Louisiana University.

She is married to Travis Uzee and has a son, Connor Cook, and two stepdaughters, Caroline and Marguerite Uzee.

DEPUTY DIRECTOR OF LYCÉE ASCENSION EST

Originally from Niceville, Florida, Laginess began her work at Ascension Public Schools in 2013. She has been a special education teacher in Resource and LEAP Connect environments, as well as tennis coach and assistant swimming coach at St. Lover High.

In 2018, she moved to Lowery Middle School to take on the position of Senior Special Education Teacher. A year later, she moved to fill the same position at East Ascension High School. Most recently, she served the district as the Special Education Coordinator at the LeBlanc Special Service Center, where she continued her work with East Ascension High, as well as assisted Central Middle and Gonzales Middle Schools.

“I am honored to have the opportunity to serve East Ascension High School and their community in this new role of Deputy Principal,” said Laginess. “East Ascension High School is a school like no other; rich in tradition, culture and pride.

Laginess obtained both a bachelor’s and a master’s degree from Auburn University and an Education Specialist’s degree from LSU. She is preparing her doctorate at Southeastern Louisiana University.


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Coronavirus UK news – Orange list quarantine will be FOCUSed for anyone vaccinated in the US or the EU as the Covid pandemic rages on

SCHOOL CLOSURES “MAY BE BEHIND FALL IN COVID-19 CASES ACROSS THE UK”

Closing schools for the summer holidays is probably one of the reasons coronavirus cases are declining across the UK, a leading expert has said.

Dr Mike Tildesley, a member of the Pandemic Influenza Modeling Scientific Group (Spi-M), advising ministers, said he was “cautiously optimistic” about dropping cases, but only time will tell if the third wave of Covid “turns around”.

The infectious disease expert, from the University of Warwick, told BBC Radio 4’s Today program that “any situation where cases are clearly declining is good news”.

But he added: “I think what we have to think about, however, is that there has been a change recently and I think the most important thing is that in many parts of the country schools are now closed for the summer.

“Now, of course, because of that, that means … high school students have been doing lateral flow tests twice a week for quite a long time and we know that right now the cases are slightly higher among young people ( and) because schools are now closed, it may be that part of the reason the cases have decreased somewhat is that we are not detecting as many cases among young people now.

“The other thing we need to look at before we really know if we’re seeing it all turn around is what happens with hospital admissions and, of course, what happens with deaths.”


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Latest coronavirus: Moderna jab is safe to use for adolescents, says European Medicines Agency

The governor of Alabama, the least vaccinated state in the United States, has blamed “unvaccinated people” for a recent increase in Covid-19 cases.

Kay Ivey said “people are supposed to have common sense” when a reporter asked her what it would take for more people in the state to get vaccinated.

“It’s time to start blaming unvaccinated people, not ordinary people. It’s the unvaccinated people who let us down, ”she told a press conference on Friday.

When asked if she considered it her responsibility, as governor, to try to help bring the situation under control, Ivey said, “I’ve done everything I can do.”

“I can encourage you to do something, but I cannot force you to take care of yourself,” continued the Republican governor.

The comments may represent some of Ivey’s harshest words about the late vaccine rollout in his state, but also highlight the swirling debate in the United States between encouragement and mandates on issues such as wearing masks and vaccinations.

Several states have taken steps to ban so-called vaccine passports or prohibit workplaces from requiring employees to be vaccinated. Alabama is one of them.

Ivey signed a bill in May to ban public institutions and private companies from requiring vaccine passports. But Fort Rucker, a state military base, this month ordered troops to prove they had been vaccinated so they can be exempted from wearing face masks in the field.

Alabama has fully immunized 33.9% of its population, the lowest level of coverage in the United States, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. However, one of the state’s star college football teams has successfully vaccinated nearly 90 percent of its players, according to its coach.

Public health officials have warned for weeks that communities with low vaccination rates are most vulnerable to Covid-19, and in particular to the more transmissible Delta variant. Several states with low immunization coverage, such as Louisiana, Arkansas, Missouri, and Mississippi, have some of the highest per capita rates of new coronavirus cases in the United States.

Alabama has averaged about 19.5 new cases per 100,000 over the past week, according to the CDC. This is the ninth highest per capita rate among U.S. states and its highest level of daily infections since mid-February.


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On the water: Hot summer fishing | News, Sports, Jobs

The snapper fishing was good. Herb Webb and his family brought home their limit of tasty mangrove snapper by fishing near Captiva Island with Captain Bill Russell. PHOTO PROVIDED

The weather was good on the water last week. Of course, it’s summer so it was hot as expected and afternoon thunderstorms were frequent. The mornings were relatively cool with a light breeze before giving way to the heat around noon. The fishing was good at times, at times slow and unpredictable from day to day, but that’s normal for the heat of summer.

Red groupers with a few 30-inch pushes have been caught on hard bottoms at depths of 80 to 110 feet. A mix of snapper, porgy, and growls also came from the same bottom. Reports of red snapper came from depths starting at one hundred and forty feet and deeper. Seems like the deeper the water, the bigger the snapper. The red snapper season is windy as the season ends on July 29.

Wrecks and public or man-made reefs in depths of 50 to 100 feet have produced tough fighting fish, including amberjack, goliath grouper, bonito, king mackerel, barracuda, and some large sharks. Fishing coastal artificial reefs at depths of 25 to 50 feet, anglers report a variety of snooks, snapper, Spanish mackerel, barracuda, sharks, undersized red grouper and gag, tripletail, and permit grouper.

The Spanish mackerel bite was intermittent around the Gulf passes and the Gulf side of the Sanibel Causeway. Small silver spoons with quick recovery were the best method while drifting, and live pilchards, herring or live freeline shrimp worked well. Ladybugs were often numerous to take over if the mackerel bite was extinguished. Spanish mackerel have been caught in large numbers chasing bait schools in Charlotte Harbor, near Bokeelia, off the east coast of Useppa Island and along the bars inside the Redfish Passes and Captiva.

With snook in their summer spawning pattern, the best action came from areas near and around the Gulf Passes. Fish measuring up to thirty-eight inches have been caught and released from the docks around Punta Rassa, the Sanibel Fishing Pier and north of the Boca Grande Pass, including beaches, passes and the structure between them. of them. The best baits included pinfish, pigfish, or live grunts, and pilchards, sardines, or herring. Schools of 20-27 inch male snooks have been seen caught along the waves of Sanibel, Captiva Islands and Cayo Costa Islands. Small jigs and white flies, along with live shrimp, pilchards and small pinfish were the best bait.

The coastal mangrove snapper bite has remained constant week after week. Some days are better than others, but with a little time and effort most anglers come back with a limit. Fish up to 15 inches have been boxed in and around gulf passes and nearby mangrove shores and docks. Inshore anglers caught snapper from Blind Pass, Sanibel and Bokeelia fishing piers, and the Matlacha Draw Bridge. Baits of choice include live and dead shrimp, dead or live sardines, and frozen sardines. There are a lot of catfish around, sometimes it is difficult to get the bait in front of the cats to hook a snapper. Sometimes when this happens, it’s better to move on and fish somewhere else.

The spotted sea trout were widespread in the grassy plains four to eight feet deep north of Matlacha Pass, off the east and west walls of Charlotte Harbor and Pine Island Strait west of Bokeelia to the south. from Cabbage Key and between Rocky Channel and Hemp Key. Channel edge targeting or drifting worked for trout up to 21 inches. Most of the trout are undersized, but many anglers have caught a limit. Mackerel, bluefish, ladybugs, trevally, and small sharks were also caught.

Make sure and stay up to date with fishing regulations by visiting www.myfwc.com. Also download the Fish Rules app on your phone. It has regulations in place with pictures to help identify fish.

Summer gives us the potential for nasty thunderstorms to appear daily and develop quite quickly. Watch the clouds develop and have a plan. If lightning begins to explode, go to a sheltered or protected location. Shooting against a mangrove island or shore is much safer than staying over open water. Also keep your boat as low-key as possible. Take fishing rods or graphite lightning sticks out of the rod holders and down. While rain is just an inconvenience, lightning is deadly, please take it seriously.

If you have a fishing report or for charter information, contact Gulf Coast Guide Service at 239-410-8576 (call or text); on the web at www.fishpineisland.com; or by email at [email protected]

Have a good week and good fishing.

As a lifelong resident of Matlacha and Pine Island, Captain Bill Russell has spent his life fishing and learning the waters around Pine Island and Southwest Florida, and as a professional fishing guide at over the past 23 years.


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