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Very hungry caterpillars, murder hornets, and back-to-school worries
By TVO Current Affairs - Published on Jul 27, 2020
The province recorded 103 new coronavirus cases yesterday, a welcome dip after 203 were reported Tuesday. (



Good morning, Ontario.

Here's what we're following

New COVID-19 cases drop, hospitalizations jump

The province recorded 103 new coronavirus cases yesterday, a welcome dip after 203 were reported Tuesday. Still, the province’s daily new case totals are trending upward. The province also reported a spike in hospitalizations, an uptick of 28 to bring the total to 154.

Province commits to building 30 schools

The provincial government has promised $500 million to build 30 new schools and make permanent additions to 15 existing facilities — one part of a plan to spend $12 billion over 10 years on new school spaces. “By making these smart investments today, we will ensure our students and teachers have access to modern facilities to learn with features like high-speed Internet, accessible ramps and elevators, and air conditioning, while providing parents with access to more licensed child-care spaces,” Premier Doug Ford said in a statement. 

School-reopening announcement possible next week

Education Minister Stephen Lecce said families could hear details about the province’s plan for schools as early as next week. “We are finalizing the health protocols and working very closely with the Chief Medical Officer of Health and some of the best pediatric minds in the nation that are informing the plan,” Lecce said during a press conference, according to CTV News. He added the plan “will include additional supports and resources to enable our boards to succeed.”

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The Agenda in the Summer: Oceans in peril

Journalist Laura Trethewey joins host Nam Kiwanuka to discuss her book, The Imperiled Ocean: Human Stories from a Changing Sea.

Bugs: Japan

The team travels to Japan to capture the Asian giant hornet — an insect that has been dubbed the “murder hornet” but whose larvae are a highly prized delicacy. They also sample rice that has been steamed with the feces of the cherry fruit maggot.

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Back to school, Part 1: An infectious-disease expert on reopening safely

Columnist Matt Gurney speaks with Zain Chagla, an associate professor at McMaster University, about hygiene, classroom quarantines, and what the science says about reopening schools. “The driver is really close contact — droplet contact, specifically. So, in a school, how do we combat that? Do we need a real deep clean, 360 degrees, every day in every classroom? Probably not,” Chagla says. “The challenge is going to be those kids that are in contact with each other with the heavy breathing, sneezing, coughing, all kinds of close droplet exposure.”

How Ontario is battling a very hungry caterpillar


Gypsy-moth caterpillars are killing trees throughout the province. Hamilton and Niagara reporter Justin Chandler speaks to a research team that thinks understanding how they pee could help defeat them.

Tonight on TVO

7 p.m. — Monty Don’s French Gardens: Gourmet gardens

Horticulturalist Monty Don examines how the French love of food has influenced the country's gardens. He travels to some of the most famous potagers — or kitchen gardens — where vegetables and flowers are planted together in elaborate displays. He also picks asparagus and learns about the importance of soil.

8 p.m. — The Agenda in the Summer: A perfect summer pastime

Suanne Kelman speaks with host Nam Kiwanuka about the pleasures of birdwatching — and how the pastime has changed over the years.

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