Photo: Rich Pedroncelli/AP Photo
Gov. Gavin Newsom discusses an outline for what it will take to lift coronavirus restrictions during a news conference at the Governor's Office of Emergency Services in Rancho Cordova, Calif., Tuesday, April 14, 2020. Newsom said he won't loosen the state's mandatory stay-at-home order until hospitalizations, particularly those in intensive care units, "flatten and start to decline."

Gov. Gavin Newsom says it is too soon to ease up on restrictions keeping millions of students out of school, but when they do return, possibly in the fall, they would likely come back to schools organized in radically different ways in order to protect students, staff and families.

Currently over 6 million students in California are out of school, and school districts are struggling to provide them with “distance learning” that will hold their attention for weeks or months.

Newsom said the main challenge in reopening schools is how to ensure physical distancing among students and adults. That, he said, might require schools implementing staggered schedules, with some students coming in the morning and others in the afternoon. Students would not be able to congregate during mealtimes. Other school activities that involve larger groups, such as assemblies, physical education and recess would have to be reformed.

In addition, he said, “deep sanitation” and “massive deep cleaning,” would be needed in schools and beyond, including disinfecting playgrounds, parks, swings, benches and sidewalks.

“We need to get our kids back to school, I need to get my kids back to school, we need to get our kids educated and we need to deal with kids’ mental health and that of their parents,” he said. “But we need to do it in a safe way, so that kids are not going to school, getting infected and coming back home and infecting grandma and grandpa,” Newsom said during his daily press briefing on the state’s response to the coronavirus. “So we have to be very, very vigilant in that respect.”

He said he was having intensive conversations on how schools could be reorganized with State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond and other education leaders. The changes in school schedules would have to be negotiated with labor leaders, he acknowledged.

The California Teachers Association, the state’s largest teachers’ union, indicated its willingness to participate in those discussions. “Like Gov. Newsom, we want to bring our students and educators back to a safe environment,” CTA spokeswoman Claudia Briggs said. “We look forward to working to ensure that when it is time to reopen schools, educators are part of the conversation so our students can be taught well and in safe conditions.”

David Gordon, Sacramento County superintendent of schools, commended Newsom for bringing up the issue of school reopening now, “when we have time to think through the accommodations that will have to take place.” Some of the possibilities, such as double shifts at school, have been tried before, during a time of school overcrowding, he said, not for social distancing for health reasons. Adaptations may not be easy, he said, “but if you asked me two months ago, if families would be holed in their homes for six weeks, I would have said it would be impossible.”

“I’ve been impressed how people have observed instructions,” he said. Students’ willingness, he said, will depend on the ability to convince them that new rules “are not to inconvenience them but to keep them healthy.”

Newsom said that he will make further announcement about timing regarding any easing of restrictions in two weeks, and if he does recommend any easing, it will be done only if there is a decrease in hospitalizations and deaths, as well as an adequate supply of personal protective equipment and other essential supplies.

He acknowledged that because Californians have been mostly diligent in following sheltering in place orders, the state is seeing a much smaller surge in infections, hospitalizations and deaths than it originally projected. He noted that the number of patients in intensive care has actually declined — to 1077 on Tuesday — admittedly only a 0.1 percent decrease since Monday, but a decrease nonetheless. “We are finally seeing rays of sunshine on the horizon,” he said.

“We can’t get ahead of ourselves,” he said, pointing to the fact that 71 Californians have died since the last report a day ago. “I don’t want to pull the plug too early. I don’t want to make a political decision that puts  people’s lives and economy at risk.”

He said Californians would be able to go back to a normal life and routine only when there is “herd immunity” in the state and a vaccine is able to protect Californians and others from the virus. Herd immunity refers the point at which enough people become immune to a disease that it stops the disease from spreading. By all accounts, development of a vaccine is to require a year or more. So any easing of restrictions in the summer or fall would have to take into account that the virus still would present a risk to children and families.

Newsom said the prospect of any “mass gatherings” in the state anytime soon are “negligible at best until we get to herd immunity and a vaccine.” That presumably would rule out large gatherings like school sports events, concerts or parent nights for the foreseeable future.

“That could change,” Newsom said, if a vaccine is developed sooner.

To get more reports like this one, click here to sign up for EdSource’s no-cost daily email on latest developments in education.

Share Article

Comments are closed

Join the conversation by going to Edsource's Twitter or Facebook pages. If you do not have a social media account, you can learn how to create a Twitter account here and a Facebook account here.

  1. Pam 3 months ago3 months ago

    There is no way to manage and teach kindergarten and enforce social distancing.

  2. Itech104 4 months ago4 months ago

    1- parents need to provide sanitation wipes and hand cleaner for their own kids. If not, this will be too expensive for schools. 2- Make classes that do not factor in the grade Online only. 3- To reduce class size, create more supervised outdoor activities with no shared equipment or only non contact or foot sports. 4- All humans will wear masks on campus. Each mask will have the LastName visual. … Read More

    1- parents need to provide sanitation wipes and hand cleaner for their own kids. If not, this will be too expensive for schools.

    2- Make classes that do not factor in the grade Online only.

    3- To reduce class size, create more supervised outdoor activities with no shared equipment or only non contact or foot sports.

    4- All humans will wear masks on campus. Each mask will have the LastName visual.

    5- All schools need Late Start.v8.30am earliest. Extend After School with help from surrounding communities.

  3. ES 4 months ago4 months ago

    Children and students need to congregate; herd immunity can’t happen if we separate those less vulnerable to severe effects of Covid-19 and families need to ensure they are protecting grandparents at home. The government is not responsible for everything here, and I want to know when parents are going to be weighing in on these return to school ideas, because we also get to join in on this discussion, correct?

  4. Jennifer 4 months ago4 months ago

    You should start with a long-term solution: ditch the overcrowded classrooms & schools. You need to prioritize our kids for real & give the schools more money, hire more teachers, provide them the supplies they need to carry out cleaning protocol. Starting school early will put too many in central California at risk of heat exhaustion when it’s 110 degrees here. Don’t recreate the wheel, just provide funding for less kids in each class. That’s a no brainer!!!

  5. Kameron Beth Krause 4 months ago4 months ago

    OMG the comments I'm reading. What is wrong with everybody? Are you that afraid of everything? Do you drive a car? Play a sport. Go swimming. I mean life is not guaranteed, but to stay home in fear of everything is not living. It's existing. These kids are being put on house arrest for no reason. Personally I could care less if my 14 year old ever went back to school especially in this state. … Read More

    OMG the comments I’m reading. What is wrong with everybody? Are you that afraid of everything? Do you drive a car? Play a sport. Go swimming. I mean life is not guaranteed, but to stay home in fear of everything is not living. It’s existing.

    These kids are being put on house arrest for no reason. Personally I could care less if my 14 year old ever went back to school especially in this state. Ranks about 43 to 45 out of the 50 states every year, so i don’t think he’s missing anything. But we all loved being with our friends. My boy loves playing baseball. It’s all being taken away from them because of adults and their irrational fear-mongering.

    I have got to get to a state like Texas or something. Somewhere people are tough and brave. This whole comment feed is embarrassing and pathetic.

  6. Debbie 4 months ago4 months ago

    I am a teacher. I meet with my students every morning and try and teach them what I can, but the distance between the higher ability group and the lower ability group is getting larger and larger. They are also beginning to use words such as anxious, nervous, alone, lonely……. We need to figure out a way to get these kids back to school, safely.

  7. Justbecause 4 months ago4 months ago

    It appears to me that some commenting don't have children or they are looking for a way to get there children out ot their hair. Minor children, middle school children and even teenagers will not adhere to social distancing. These children may contract and bring the virus home to parents and grandparents. The shelter in place is working and should be continued for all concerned. Also, what about the risk to teachers? How dare people … Read More

    It appears to me that some commenting don’t have children or they are looking for a way to get there children out ot their hair. Minor children, middle school children and even teenagers will not adhere to social distancing. These children may contract and bring the virus home to parents and grandparents. The shelter in place is working and should be continued for all concerned. Also, what about the risk to teachers? How dare people expect them to sacrifice themselves so others can have a babysitter! I know this situation is hard and there are many perspectives to consider, but don’t knowingly put us others at risk because of political pressures and selfish individuals.

  8. Linda Aswad 4 months ago4 months ago

    This is ridiculous! I think at this point we need to try to implement rules to protect the population at risk of dying from the virus. Not every living human! There is a segment of the population that can seriously be affected, let’s focus on them. Everyone else go back to work and school!

  9. bob blexor 4 months ago4 months ago

    I’m not concerned about Covid-19; what i am concerned is the next virus that comes down the pike!! In my opinion, it will be an airborne pathogen. Right now I am in the process of moving to Switzerland like my former neighbors just did. A lot of people I know also moved to Russia/Mongolia area as well.

  10. Hammer66 4 months ago4 months ago

    In our district we are less than 4 months away from the start of the Fall semester. It's hard to see how we will have herd immunity or a vaccine by then. Newsom has and will almost certainly continue to be extremely conservative and err on better safe than sorry. It seems hard to believe he will green light schools opening in any modified way in the Fall. Even if he … Read More

    In our district we are less than 4 months away from the start of the Fall semester. It’s hard to see how we will have herd immunity or a vaccine by then. Newsom has and will almost certainly continue to be extremely conservative and err on better safe than sorry. It seems hard to believe he will green light schools opening in any modified way in the Fall. Even if he wanted to open them up, the various teachers’ unions have a lot of clout, and if they don’t want to go back, it probably isn’t happening.

    Big picture, as antibody testing becomes widespread, we will almost surely learn that the infection rate has been radically higher than what is being currently reported. The mortality rate will therefore drop substantially and we will find it to ultimately be estimated to be <1%. The primary issue is communicability, which is a problem due to 1) lack of prior exposure and development of protective antibodies due to the novel nature of the virus, 2) lack of vaccine, and 3) asymptomatics ability to spread. Therefore, it would not be a stretch to estimate 100 million infected this year with deaths approaching the 1 million mark if the virus were left to run through the country with no mitigation taking place.

    We're just buying time and avoiding a collapse of the healthcare system right now. We are in the first or second inning.

  11. Kate 4 months ago4 months ago

    It feels like most of the comments here are either people being very selfish, or just don’t care about creating a harmful environment for teachers and students. More than 30% of the teachers at the school district I work for are over the age of 50, some with health problems that are managed with medication, but introduced to coronavirus will create another problem in our school system: dying teachers. It is also unreasonable to expect … Read More

    It feels like most of the comments here are either people being very selfish, or just don’t care about creating a harmful environment for teachers and students.

    More than 30% of the teachers at the school district I work for are over the age of 50, some with health problems that are managed with medication, but introduced to coronavirus will create another problem in our school system: dying teachers. It is also unreasonable to expect teachers and students to wear masks all day; half of my students’ masks would be off their faces within two hours.

    This is a pandemic, this is not normal times. Our governor is making difficult, sound judgments based on scientific recommendations—not for power, and he is not is “overstepping.“

  12. Kathleen Loia 4 months ago4 months ago

    You can’t expect kindergarteners to social distance. Please remember that kindergarten is not the same as first through fifth grades, even though most elementary schools are K-5. Different scenarios need to take place, a different thought process needs to be at hand, and if school is still not mandatory for a child under 6, please remember that’s more than half my class … so if it’s not mandatory, well … think about it!

  13. Steve Singh 4 months ago4 months ago

    My kids were attending private school, and now they are home on distance learning like all students. We were expecting to return to school first week off April. So I left the school deposit for the fall programs. Since then, Covid 19 pandemic has taken a whole different turn. I requested for my deposit back because of this uncertainty, but I am being told that it is non-refundable. … Read More

    My kids were attending private school, and now they are home on distance learning like all students. We were expecting to return to school first week off April. So I left the school deposit for the fall programs. Since then, Covid 19 pandemic has taken a whole different turn. I requested for my deposit back because of this uncertainty, but I am being told that it is non-refundable. Under current conditions, I don’t understand. I am really upset. Can you offer any guidance. I would appreciate it.

  14. Deirdre 4 months ago4 months ago

    I am a teacher. On my last day of teaching as I sat with my childen, a little boy sitting next to me that has development problems sneezed and coughed all over my hand, my arm and my book. I reminded him repeatedly to cough into his sleeve. He never did. I am afraid for myself and my students. Children don't naturally isolate. They hug! They touch! If any are asymptomatic, … Read More

    I am a teacher. On my last day of teaching as I sat with my childen, a little boy sitting next to me that has development problems sneezed and coughed all over my hand, my arm and my book. I reminded him repeatedly to cough into his sleeve. He never did.

    I am afraid for myself and my students. Children don’t naturally isolate. They hug! They touch! If any are asymptomatic, one touch, one cough and it is spread immediately to their friends who you are so worried that they are missing. That student goes home and the household is exposed.

    As a teacher, I have repeatedly gone home with strep throat, lice, stomach flu, etc. given to me by my students. I do not want this. I do not want them to have this. I do not want you to have this. I know personally people who have had it. I have held students who have lost parents and grandparents to heart attacks, cancer, etc. I don’t want to do it in large numbers because of Covid 19! The children and I do not need to be guinea pigs, whether it is done purposely or unwittingly!

    Replies

    • Adileny 4 months ago4 months ago

      I’m with you 100 !!

    • Lisa 4 months ago4 months ago

      EXACTLY! Thank you for your comment. I Am 61 & work in school. No way to stop from being sneezed on, coughed on etc… This job doesn’t pay enough to risk dying so that parents can have a break. Don’t forget bus drivers & bus monitors. Lots to consider.

  15. Special needs parent 4 months ago4 months ago

    I understand the health concerns but the longer students are being kept out of school. I worry about my children’s education that they are missing. Yes, we do as much as we can at home. With an autistic child that has an IEP, he is missing out not just the education but also his speech therapy, occupational therapy and behavioral therapy. Not to mention the social learning by being at school. I hope by the … Read More

    I understand the health concerns but the longer students are being kept out of school. I worry about my children’s education that they are missing. Yes, we do as much as we can at home. With an autistic child that has an IEP, he is missing out not just the education but also his speech therapy, occupational therapy and behavioral therapy. Not to mention the social learning by being at school.

    I hope by the fall the schools will reopen. If that meant testing the kids prior to going back to school, I would have no problem with testing first to show that they are virus-free.

    Replies

    • Jessica S. 4 months ago4 months ago

      I am currently feeling the same way. My son was in a special education preschool and I’m worried about him missing out on skills he’ll need to mainstream during Kindergarten. His PT & OT have also stopped. We tried doing them via Zoom and he was not having that lol. He is agreeable to Speech Therapy via Zoom though.

      This is crucial time that kids with special needs will never get back.

    • Lisa 4 months ago4 months ago

      I work with special needs kids. I understand your frustration. Do you care at all about us. We have done our best to give our all to your kids and miss them, but what about us?? And the bus drivers & monitors? Taking temperatures daily is no guarantee. Would you want to take the risk?

  16. BLee 4 months ago4 months ago

    I think opening schools back up will not be the best idea from a public health standpoint. Statistically the odds of this virus coming back in September are high and once kids get infected there is no guarantee they can survive from the virus unless there is a specific antibody that can fight off the virus such as a vaccine. We have to stand up for the immunocompromised kids who can't fight off this … Read More

    I think opening schools back up will not be the best idea from a public health standpoint. Statistically the odds of this virus coming back in September are high and once kids get infected there is no guarantee they can survive from the virus unless there is a specific antibody that can fight off the virus such as a vaccine. We have to stand up for the immunocompromised kids who can’t fight off this virus. It is hard for parents to adjust, but an inconvenience is worth it if lives are being saved.

  17. Annette Londquist 4 months ago4 months ago

    What if no vaccine is created? There isn't one for SARS or HIV. Does this mean California will shelter in place for 12-18 months? This will devastate our economy, suicides will increase, drug and alcohol abuse will skyrocket as well as domestic violence and child abuse. Also, I seriously doubt if Newsom would be re-elected. The corona virus has been in California since December. Treat us like adults instead of children who cannot be trusted … Read More

    What if no vaccine is created? There isn’t one for SARS or HIV. Does this mean California will shelter in place for 12-18 months? This will devastate our economy, suicides will increase, drug and alcohol abuse will skyrocket as well as domestic violence and child abuse. Also, I seriously doubt if Newsom would be re-elected.

    The corona virus has been in California since December. Treat us like adults instead of children who cannot be trusted to do the correct thing. This power will backfire on you.

  18. Laura Rolfness 4 months ago4 months ago

    Who of you can that have criticized Governor Newsom would like to have his job right now ? He is doing a superb job and kept Covid19 at bay for which we all should be grateful. This is about keeping a monster virus contained and then snuffed out. Anywhere that people gather the virus will continue to spread. Schools are a breeding ground for the virus and parents who are concerned about their kids missing … Read More

    Who of you can that have criticized Governor Newsom would like to have his job right now ? He is doing a superb job and kept Covid19 at bay for which we all should be grateful.

    This is about keeping a monster virus contained and then snuffed out. Anywhere that people gather the virus will continue to spread. Schools are a breeding ground for the virus and parents who are concerned about their kids missing their friends are can set up play dates and take there own risks and not dictate the fate of others. A lot has been sacrificed to keep this virus under control and it can unravel in a heartbeat if we open up to soon.

    We have the means to combine online teaching with perhaps a staggered school session or year round until either testing or a vaccine exists. In the meanwhile, we need to calm and temper our expectations for the welfare of our state and the good of humanity. I work in the office of a high school at retirement age and I am afraid as I should be. If kids are traumatized by staying at home, how traumatized will they be knowing they infected their own family and causing their deaths?

    We need to base decisions on facts and data and we need only to look at New York as our 20/20 hindsight. How bad will we feel if we don’t learn from the lessons of those who have died recently? This problem is so much bigger than that of a child missing school for a few months. Everyone, please look beyond yourselves.

  19. NikL 4 months ago4 months ago

    Does anyone really believe that Newsom wants kids to stay at home longer or that he wants the government to 'control' them? There is no upside for him in this. Even people who agree with the measures he has taken so far are going to get angry, restless, and frustrated the longer that the restrictions stay in place. He's going to take an increasingly hard drubbing for continuing the restrictions. He's listening to the doctors, … Read More

    Does anyone really believe that Newsom wants kids to stay at home longer or that he wants the government to ‘control’ them? There is no upside for him in this. Even people who agree with the measures he has taken so far are going to get angry, restless, and frustrated the longer that the restrictions stay in place. He’s going to take an increasingly hard drubbing for continuing the restrictions. He’s listening to the doctors, epidemiologists and following their guidelines, which is what he should be doing.

    If you want to be mad, be mad at the virus. Be mad that it was brought to our country. Be mad that we, as a country, were woefully unprepared to handle it.

  20. Marla King, RN 4 months ago4 months ago

    I hope that school nurses are included in the discussions regarding reopening schools and protecting students. teachers, and families. We have very little PPE beyond gloves, no way to isolate students who may be waiting in our offices for hours for a parent or adult to pick up a student, and see students with chronic conditions many times throughout the day. Especially those with diabetes. There is no way to intensively clean between each student, … Read More

    I hope that school nurses are included in the discussions regarding reopening schools and protecting students. teachers, and families. We have very little PPE beyond gloves, no way to isolate students who may be waiting in our offices for hours for a parent or adult to pick up a student, and see students with chronic conditions many times throughout the day. Especially those with diabetes.

    There is no way to intensively clean between each student, answer the phone, call and talk with parents, document and keep everyone safe at this time. School nursing is very different than nursing in a hospital, offices, urgent care and clinics. We work only with non-medical personnel. One nurse per (for me) about 1,000 students. Multiply that by the number of teachers and staff, family members and administration we constantly attempt to guide. I have many questions about the safety of our children as well as their grandparents. It will be a sad day when we have a school outbreak.

  21. Todd 4 months ago4 months ago

    Herd immunity has no chance of occurring with people lock in at home. Herd immunity can only take place with people reentering their normal interactions within the community. This includes getting kids back to school and resuming normal school activities sports, concerts etc…

    FYI: We are medical professionals and are educated on this subject.

    Replies

    • Rose 4 months ago4 months ago

      If you’re educated on herd immunity, you must know that herd immunity will not work with COVID-19. Because nearly 10 percent of those who test positive die, too many people would become seriously sick or die if we opened the barn doors and let the herd out.

  22. eveAnonymous custodian 4 months ago4 months ago

    Our schools have been avoiding disasters like this for decades but our luck has finally run out. Unless major changes are made, opening schools before a vaccine is developed is only asking for the virus to come right back. First off, there is no disinfecting classrooms on a daily basis. Not when custodial crews are grossly understaffed due to budgeting issues. On average, each site has between four to five custodians, who then have at … Read More

    Our schools have been avoiding disasters like this for decades but our luck has finally run out. Unless major changes are made, opening schools before a vaccine is developed is only asking for the virus to come right back.

    First off, there is no disinfecting classrooms on a daily basis. Not when custodial crews are grossly understaffed due to budgeting issues. On average, each site has between four to five custodians, who then have at least 20 classrooms and anywhere from six to a dozen restrooms in their assigned areas. Each day is already a sprint for custodians who actually can get the bare minimum done. Many do not. There simply isn’t any additional time to wipe off surfaces. The problem certainly isn’t made any better due to the size of the classes and the fact that most sites do not have a dedicated area for students to eat. Instead, they bring their meals into the classrooms, which is obviously a germ-spreading bonanza.

  23. Martin 4 months ago4 months ago

    I think folks are glossing over that the virus has 2% mortality rate. It’s way higher than flu. It’s up there with Polio(5-10% morbidity rate.l)
    The curve has been flattened and will be squashed by fall if we are smart about reopening. The rate of infection should be extremely low. It is transmitted through the mouth and nose. Safeguards of wearing a mask all day during school would do more good than almost any measure. We all know.

  24. Karen 4 months ago4 months ago

    If our memory care facilities and assisted living facilities can incorporate plans to stagger meal times, activities, and everything. I think our teachers and faculty can do it to.

  25. Beatrice 4 months ago4 months ago

    Staggering, deep cleaning, masks, reduction in class size will be needed unless we want to squander away all the gains from social distancing. Letting kids back and hoping for herd immunity is just that, a hope, wishful thinking. Herd immunity is not a guarantee. First off, we don't even know at this point if people who had Covid will have immunity and if yes, how long. We can't count on herd immunity until we have … Read More

    Staggering, deep cleaning, masks, reduction in class size will be needed unless we want to squander away all the gains from social distancing. Letting kids back and hoping for herd immunity is just that, a hope, wishful thinking.

    Herd immunity is not a guarantee. First off, we don’t even know at this point if people who had Covid will have immunity and if yes, how long. We can’t count on herd immunity until we have a vaccine. Herd immunity will be achieved through vaccination, not through natural spread, because natural spread is too fast and deadly that it will cripple our health care system.

    The second “reason” to return to normal, that kids need to play and interact, therefore we should let them, is dangerous. I’m not arguing that they don’t need to interact and yes, they will miss their friends who might not be on the same class with them if they’re staggered. Of course. But tough luck, we’re not in an ideal world right now. They will have to learn new ways of interacting, and they will, because kids are resilient and they adapt.

    And it’s a good point that students won’t get the same type or level of education, but it’s not a good enough reason to go back to the way it was and speed up infection rates. We need to buy time until a vaccine is a available for the mainstream population, and if it means sacrificing the quality of education for a year, then that’s what it will have to be.

    What worries me though is the reality of schools. We should hire more aides and teachers to make this work, yet we just let go of most of the aides at my school because of our shrunken budget as we couldn’t fundraise this spring. We should not send children to school sick, especially if it may be a mild form of Covid, but you know parents will dose their kiddos with Tylenol and send them to school fingers crossed anyway. The kids can’t miss school because the parents can’t miss work because they don’t have sick days.

    Kids are coughing for weeks in my class each winter, but don’t miss a day, for parents have no insurance, no days off, no savings, no plan B. Until there’s some cushion for the working class with social services and protections in place, it will continue to be this way. And until the model of schools getting funding only for students in seats, schools will encourage perfect attendance because a sick student is money lost, but the cost of running a school is still the same.

  26. Angela 4 months ago4 months ago

    Why don’t we just test all children and school staff for antibodies prior to fall? This seems more reasonable than keeping kids home and not allowing them a proper education as well as interaction with their peers, which I feel is crucial to their development and mental wellbeing. Those that don’t have immunity should wear masks just like other countries have implemented.

    California already has a poor education system, this will just cripple it even further.

  27. Teresa J Osborne 4 months ago4 months ago

    Gavin Newsom continues to show his true colors. He is gaslighting us to further his progressive agenda, using this ‘pandemic’ to increase dependence upon the government, and purposely scaring us into compliance. Do you know what should scare the citizens of California more than this virus? Newsom and his Draconian reaction to it.

  28. Working mom 4 months ago4 months ago

    This is ridiculous! How are double-income families supposed to go to work when our kids are supposed to stay at home? Is a babysitter now a must for our kids that will double as a homeschool teacher? Who can afford or find such person? Get our kids back in school!!

    Replies

    • Teacher and Mom 4 months ago4 months ago

      So schools are babysitters and students’ and staff’s health isn’t important?

    • Kate 4 months ago4 months ago

      I appreciate the dilemma parents are facing, but schools will open, at least partially, when the stay-at-home order is lifted. Your comment tells me that both parents in the home I have to report to work because of being essential workers? I have very few students that have this situation, most have at least one parent who was working from home or is unemployed and at home.

  29. Santa Rosa parent 4 months ago4 months ago

    The harm caused to our children by the overreaching restrictions that are not rationally related to the health risk posed are far worse. Look at the numbers in relation to our population and the irrational decisions being made. Kids need in-person instruction, social interaction, and hope for the future. Our governor is not taking into account the cost of his mandates.

    Replies

    • Lorna Distad 4 months ago4 months ago

      Only the living need social interaction, etc. Your children are as vulnerable as anyone else. You're willing to gamble not only with your children's lives, but with that of their classmates, families, and teachers. Want to make a difference? Get a teaching credential and jump in there. Go for it. What you call "ridiculous" hinges on the narrow ignorance, the simplistic assessment of the death toll. More telling are the numbers of the … Read More

      Only the living need social interaction, etc. Your children are as vulnerable as anyone else. You’re willing to gamble not only with your children’s lives, but with that of their classmates, families, and teachers. Want to make a difference? Get a teaching credential and jump in there. Go for it.

      What you call “ridiculous” hinges on the narrow ignorance, the simplistic assessment of the death toll. More telling are the numbers of the survivors with permanent damage to brain and lung function.
      There is no herd immunity or safety without vaccines or cures.

      • Amy 4 months ago4 months ago

        Excellent points, Lorna. With 5 to 10 percent of those testing positive dying, herd immunity will not work. It will only expose more people to the deadly virus. People successfully homeschool their kids. It’s not going to kill kids or parents to stay at home until a real solution, a vaccine, comes out, but the virus may.

  30. Lisa Allen 4 months ago4 months ago

    I don’t agree with this decision, it will affect the children’s mental health.

  31. Will 4 months ago4 months ago

    We need to look at the bigger picture here, We can't trade kids' freedom to grow by interacting with one another on a natural basis just to avoid a threat that we really don't understand. We mustn't act in a knee-jerk way here, and find a new solution that is properly thought through and doesn't throw our children's development under the bus. Read More

    We need to look at the bigger picture here, We can’t trade kids’ freedom to grow by interacting with one another on a natural basis just to avoid a threat that we really don’t understand. We mustn’t act in a knee-jerk way here, and find a new solution that is properly thought through and doesn’t throw our children’s development under the bus.

  32. Alan 4 months ago4 months ago

    Retired LAUSD teacher here. My standard classroom was about 900 square feet. If 75% is available for students when school resumes, and each student requires a 6 by 6 ft. area to achieve social distancing, the capacity of each classroom will be about 18 students. How many classes will teachers be asked to teach on a staggered schedule: 9 or 10 classes instead of the current five? Or will almost twice as many teachers be needed?

  33. Julie Sanders 4 months ago4 months ago

    I feel this is a dreadful plan and could be extremely damaging for children. They will have spent a very long time living a totally surreal life, probably witnessing stress in their families at home. I feel the most important thing when we leave lockdown is to give our children a a sense of normality. If they don’t get this we could face the problem of severely traumatized children. Please don’t do this to our children

  34. robyn Rodriquez 4 months ago4 months ago

    Please keep consideration for special needs kids with severe disabilities; they do not understand social distancing and very much touch private areas, nose mouth, ears, eyes.

    The class sizes are small because of this issue and some of the older students may need diaper changing. We should make those classes even smaller so we could have better monitoring for them and provide them with a safe environment.

  35. me 4 months ago4 months ago

    No! The students don’t want to be separated so if you’re going to make some of them go in afternoon and the other half in the morning, then don’t open school!

  36. Kimberle 4 months ago4 months ago

    Our kids need socializing and taking this away from them is just going to make it worse than what it already is. Telling kids they can't play with their friends is horrible to them and their mental health that the US already has a big problem with. Gavin Newsom, you need to really open your eyes and actually look at the picture besides this virus getting people sick. You're already giving our money to immigrants … Read More

    Our kids need socializing and taking this away from them is just going to make it worse than what it already is. Telling kids they can’t play with their friends is horrible to them and their mental health that the US already has a big problem with.

    Gavin Newsom, you need to really open your eyes and actually look at the picture besides this virus getting people sick. You’re already giving our money to immigrants before us Americans who have our right to be here and to be paid first before someone who is not – plain and simple.

  37. Concern for kids 4 months ago4 months ago

    That the governor sees this for the future shows how out of touch he is with the kids of California as well as reality. No more masks, no staggering of schedules so kids can’t be around their friends or learn what they need to due to lack of available time and resources, no fear of the loss of contact with people they know and care about because of social distancing. The fact that people actually … Read More

    That the governor sees this for the future shows how out of touch he is with the kids of California as well as reality. No more masks, no staggering of schedules so kids can’t be around their friends or learn what they need to due to lack of available time and resources, no fear of the loss of contact with people they know and care about because of social distancing.

    The fact that people actually follow along with this nonsense makes me lose faith in humanity. We will give up our children’s futures for what is sold to us as safety. I’m not going to stand for that for my child or any child! They deserve better than for the adults in their lives to blindly follow what has been set out for them. Question, research, learn, critically think about all sides, and then make a decision. Don’t just do what you’re told. You’ve been taught to do that by the system that is telling you what to do now. Please think more about the children and demand them getting their lives back!

  38. A Loving Parent 4 months ago4 months ago

    No. Stop this insanity. You are traumatizing children, putting adults out of work, and creating generations of angry germophobes. Kids get sick constantly, it’s a part of building immunity. You are not going to do this to my child. He will live a good, normal life.

  39. Kindra 4 months ago4 months ago

    I have about 200 kids a day, I operate a 7 period day with one of them being my conference. I could teach about 15 kids safely in my room – not a large room and it has lab stationary tables. I could teach 7 periods a day with 15 in each. Maybe no conference time unless shorten classes to 40 min each ( not sure on the mins). I would see … Read More

    I have about 200 kids a day, I operate a 7 period day with one of them being my conference. I could teach about 15 kids safely in my room – not a large room and it has lab stationary tables. I could teach 7 periods a day with 15 in each.

    Maybe no conference time unless shorten classes to 40 min each ( not sure on the mins). I would see half of my kids on Tuesday in my own room, while the other half meet in gyms, large outside tents bringing their chrome books and do distant learning online in that tent. Wednesday switch the groups. Thursday, same group I had on Tuesday, etc. Monday could be a half and half day as well.

    In California our weather is pretty good all year. Tents just need wifi (easy), kids need to bring Laptop. Space heaters, portable cooler. We might even be able to have some kind of air filter circulation system to clean the tent.

    I don’t know, but we all know this would be temporary so why not go for it! California might be the only state to be able to conduct class in tents.

  40. Kindra 4 months ago4 months ago

    I believe there was a company that invented a wand-like contraption that did a quick deep clean for an airplane in a matter of minutes. It appeared to be a type of light, hopefully not a spray. Maybe make a small spiral hat version of that radiates the light outward . Obviously if harmful to us, no…

  41. Carolina Gallagher 4 months ago4 months ago

    Is it possible to have school class instructed through the app zoom daily? The only difference would be they are not physically in the classroom.

    Replies

    • Shira 4 months ago4 months ago

      That is what they are doing now.

    • Jealisa Harris 4 months ago4 months ago

      I don’t want to send my child to school with asthma already to be sent home to his mother me with asthma and be critically sick. Please help us.

  42. Livermore Parent 4 months ago4 months ago

    We should start pushing and helping out families with homeschooling. It is much safer with no viruses, shootings, and teacher child abusers. It is much more cost efficient, and the children will learn more.

  43. Sarahsparkle 4 months ago4 months ago

    Yeah, sure, teach them in “shifts,” because its not lioe this virus stays on surfaces for hours … oh, wait…

  44. Lindsie 4 months ago4 months ago

    Natural herd immunity is far better than vaccine acquired immunity. Let those who are susceptible stay home or take precautions and let those who are healthy and not at risk (i.e. school children) return to school and work. In the long run this will be the most protective for those at risk of complications.

    Replies

    • Nicki 4 months ago4 months ago

      Who is going to be watching/teaching the children? At the school my kids go to there are a lot of either older teachers or younger teachers who have gotten/probably will get pregnant soon. Not even mentioning those with underlying conditions. I understand we have to get the kids back in school but if they are asymptomatic and spreading it around there's no telling the impact they will have on every adult in the school community … Read More

      Who is going to be watching/teaching the children? At the school my kids go to there are a lot of either older teachers or younger teachers who have gotten/probably will get pregnant soon. Not even mentioning those with underlying conditions.

      I understand we have to get the kids back in school but if they are asymptomatic and spreading it around there’s no telling the impact they will have on every adult in the school community who doesn’t make it out of corona so easily.

      Children can’t be trusted to socially distance. Who’s going to to watch them every second? What about going to the bathroom or when one needs to be helped out. Or the parents who already were sending their kids to school sick so they didn’t have to deal with it. Going back to school too early is asking for a second wave in my opinion.

    • Kate 4 months ago4 months ago

      What if it is your child’s teacher who is susceptible? Then you’re basically sending your child to school to be taught by substitute. What would be the point then?

  45. SD Parent 4 months ago4 months ago

    I agree with the idea of getting students back into the classroom where actual learning takes place (as opposed to "distance learning," which isn't working). The state didn't consider students and parents as stakeholders when making the distance learning decisions, but let's not make that mistake again with respect to students returning to school. For example, split-shift or alternating day classes are only feasible for younger children if there is a parent at home … Read More

    I agree with the idea of getting students back into the classroom where actual learning takes place (as opposed to “distance learning,” which isn’t working). The state didn’t consider students and parents as stakeholders when making the distance learning decisions, but let’s not make that mistake again with respect to students returning to school.

    For example, split-shift or alternating day classes are only feasible for younger children if there is a parent at home for half the day to care for them – not a reality for most working parents once the stay-at-home mandate is lifted and they resume working (if they aren’t already working in an essential service).

  46. Pam 4 months ago4 months ago

    Maybe go back to year-round school and every one would be in different tracks.

  47. Gregory Lin Lipford 4 months ago4 months ago

    “Lunacy” is the only word for the most disproportionate government reaction to any increased health risk in history. And for the governor to deign to make decisions for officials on what is safe is way too close to tyranny. Depriving tens of millions of a living comes at a significant price on money and actual lives, too.

  48. Susan Brinchman 4 months ago4 months ago

    I think a key action would be to require masks in public for everyone, outside the home. That will cut down on transmission. It is transmitted mainly through the air, in droplets. Not from surfaces. Let’s get real about this!

  49. Jeffrey Harris 4 months ago4 months ago

    This is a unique opportunity to reform public K12 education in CA. Let’s start by forcing school districts with under 3,000 ADA to merge – saving costs on facilities and administrative overhead while giving school districts better buying power. Next, let’s eliminate the county offices of education, which provide little value. These two ideas would save CA taxpayers significant amounts of money and will not touch the classroom.

  50. Russ 4 months ago4 months ago

    All of this is completely unnecessary. The models have been proven to be completely inaccurate from the beginning. Instead of looking at the numbers and admitting we went over the top based on bad information, the governor is doubling-down on his draconian restrictions. This is all about saving face. If he keeps this up, he needs to be recalled. The state shouldn’t suffer economically because Newsom is too prideful to admit he bought into the hype.

  51. Tim Morgan 4 months ago4 months ago

    They should also clean the walls with bleach or something, as the kids will be bouncing off them.

  52. Karrie 4 months ago4 months ago

    I am a first grade teacher and there is no way I could teach all of the state of California's adopted curriculum in a half day. This is just out of control. You can't keep kids apart in classrooms or on the playground or at lunch. They need the social interaction. Nothing has happened like they said. This is extreme to talk about keeping schools closed. Our state already performs very low on the … Read More

    I am a first grade teacher and there is no way I could teach all of the state of California’s adopted curriculum in a half day. This is just out of control. You can’t keep kids apart in classrooms or on the playground or at lunch. They need the social interaction. Nothing has happened like they said. This is extreme to talk about keeping schools closed. Our state already performs very low on the list of states. This would only make things worse.

  53. Deborah Whittaker 4 months ago4 months ago

    Another idea for elementary classrooms, or possibly even for middle schools or high schools would be to have Monday/Wednesday classes and Tuesday/Thursday classes like colleges do. Fridays can be for teachers to plan, grade, have staff meetings, and maybe do Zoom whole class time and online lessons to recap the week. On the days that students are not in school, they can do online lessons and homework. I am a retired elementary teacher. My … Read More

    Another idea for elementary classrooms, or possibly even for middle schools or high schools would be to have Monday/Wednesday classes and Tuesday/Thursday classes like colleges do. Fridays can be for teachers to plan, grade, have staff meetings, and maybe do Zoom whole class time and online lessons to recap the week. On the days that students are not in school, they can do online lessons and homework.

    I am a retired elementary teacher. My daughter is a high school English teacher who often has 40 or more students in her classroom which is smaller than my elementary one.

  54. Jerry Weir 4 months ago4 months ago

    We didn’t have nationwide shutdowns during the Poliovirus times (call it 1900-1955). Yes, there were school district closures, movie theater closures, etc. And this was for polio which could paralyze you or kill you. There were no treatments for polio. Wuhan virus on the other hand has treatments. In rare circumstances, it can cause death but so can the influenza A& B virus. Far too much overreaction here.

    Replies

    • Larry 4 months ago4 months ago

      Thanks for the comparison that factors in zero mathematics — overpopulation, rampant consumerism, overcrowding — a White House that values propaganda & popularity over human comfort and safety. Increasingly populous nations have adopted strategic plans to mitigate the death rate and you’re probably hanging out in your driveway talking about these “overreactions” from WHO scientists.

    • Kate 4 months ago4 months ago

      “In rare circumstances” polio can kill you. We have over 50,000 deaths from Coronavirus, several of which are teachers. We should be talking about how to make education the best it can be in these circumstances, not sending everyone immediately back into the classroom and hope there is a rate death. We have 3,000 students just at my school campus. It would be a nightmare of illness and death if we opened in a week.

  55. Kathy 4 months ago4 months ago

    I wonder how returning to the classrooms will be like for children with disabilities, especially the younger ones. I'm a preschool teacher of children with severe autism, and I'm afraid understanding and practicing social distancing is beyond my kiddos' grasp, and ensuring they practice safety measures will be next to impossible. Besides, those of us who work with young children know that our classrooms are like germ factories even with daily disinfecting. No matter how … Read More

    I wonder how returning to the classrooms will be like for children with disabilities, especially the younger ones. I’m a preschool teacher of children with severe autism, and I’m afraid understanding and practicing social distancing is beyond my kiddos’ grasp, and ensuring they practice safety measures will be next to impossible.

    Besides, those of us who work with young children know that our classrooms are like germ factories even with daily disinfecting. No matter how vigilant the teacher, I don’t think young children – disabilities or not – should be expected to cooperate with maintaining safety measures. Especially with such extreme consequences!

  56. Karen McGahey 4 months ago4 months ago

    Thanks so much for this helpful information. This is an opportunity to rethink the way we do school!

  57. Christopher Chiang 4 months ago4 months ago

    As of 4/15, Taiwan has 395 cases and only 6 deaths, and their schools are open, allowing up to 100 to gather indoors and 500 outdoors. I strongly urge all education leaders to look at Taiwan. Students play an active role in Taiwan's approach to COVID-19. They all wear masks at school, they eat lunch within table dividers (rather than distancing), they wash their hands on frequent intervals. Students actively report symptoms, and a step between … Read More

    As of 4/15, Taiwan has 395 cases and only 6 deaths, and their schools are open, allowing up to 100 to gather indoors and 500 outdoors. I strongly urge all education leaders to look at Taiwan.

    Students play an active role in Taiwan’s approach to COVID-19. They all wear masks at school, they eat lunch within table dividers (rather than distancing), they wash their hands on frequent intervals. Students actively report symptoms, and a step between closing school is sending just specific classes home if they’ve been exposed.

    We miss out when we do for children, rather than, educate, and then empower children to help keep their schools safe in the fall.

    More on Taiwan’s approach:
    https://www.cbc.ca/news/business/taiwan-covid-19-lessons-1.5505031

    Replies

    • Eleanore Stovall 4 months ago4 months ago

      I remember the days of early bird late bird (during the 1990s). Students were staggered according to their reading levels. Some came in at 8:30; others came at 10:00. The class size was 20-22, grades K-3. I taught grades 1-4. It’s not that difficult …it can be done! What’s needed will be more teachers, nurses, teaching assistants, counselors, vice principals, librarians, etc. The kind of resources that help all school run more efficiently.

  58. Bridget Burton 4 months ago4 months ago

    Staggering shifts is a great idea. Morning and afternoon half-day classes in which parents can decide which is better for their child/teen. Teachers can compact lessons in to 4 hour shifts with an hour before off after to plan lessons. Kids could be spaced safely in pre-arranged classes which the student has the same spot everyday- sanitizing those seats every shift. Teachers can rotate if needed. Teachers can be spaced 6 feet away … Read More

    Staggering shifts is a great idea. Morning and afternoon half-day classes in which parents can decide which is better for their child/teen. Teachers can compact lessons in to 4 hour shifts with an hour before off after to plan lessons. Kids could be spaced safely in pre-arranged classes which the student has the same spot everyday- sanitizing those seats every shift. Teachers can rotate if needed. Teachers can be spaced 6 feet away – can teach through tech screens that project in the room. Students can see their teacher and have that cherished connection.

    It can work. We need to work fast. Some facilities are so old & lack what may be needed to pull this off. Use your educational specialists, child development, counselors, special ed and tech people to envision and plan. Let your makers & builders get started.

    Administrators should not have the final word. Their input is only needed after parents & teachers approve of these ideas first. It’s about the kids & families-teachers will adapt & principals will manage. Let’s get moving! Parents are over-ready to do anything to get their kids back in class ! Let innovation rise to the occasion!

  59. Todd 4 months ago4 months ago

    Students in shifts might help with kids crowded in hallways or hanging out together, but you’ll still have 25-35 kids and an adult in a 900 sqft classroom for hours at a time and there won’t be six feet of clearance around each person (more like 3 ft). They could wear masks. We’ll need to look at Singapore for schools that have protocols for this.

  60. Mina Star 4 months ago4 months ago

    How shall we gain here immunity if we are basically under house arrest?

  61. el 4 months ago4 months ago

    I think we need to rethink the idea of attendance - how we pay schools and what our expectations are for kids coming to school sick. We are not going to want to have kids at school coughing - and certainly not with fever. Creating ways for kids to stay in contact with school when they are out is something we can take forward, possibly, from some of the lessons learned during this, because we … Read More

    I think we need to rethink the idea of attendance – how we pay schools and what our expectations are for kids coming to school sick. We are not going to want to have kids at school coughing – and certainly not with fever. Creating ways for kids to stay in contact with school when they are out is something we can take forward, possibly, from some of the lessons learned during this, because we don’t want kids to lose a week or three of schooling but we also don’t want to be spreading illness.

    Another possibility would be figuring out ways for kids who are quasi-sick to have maybe a modified place at school that gives them access to say a computer and a quiet place to work but in a more isolated situation to prevent disease transfer.

  62. Blake Woods 4 months ago4 months ago

    I’m nervous for myself, and other teachers out there, that have compromised immune systems. I have had M.S. since 2007 and take a cancer drug to keep it under control. If I go back to work, to early, and am around kids carrying the virus, I’m going to be in trouble. I love my job, but darn! I’m scared..

    Replies

    • Michael 4 months ago4 months ago

      I am a teacher with autoimmune disease thus I am risk. I love teaching, but I'm scared to go back to a classroom of students. While our leaders make it sound easy, those of us who have taught know that keeping students 6+ feet apart, etc. is difficult at best. Further it seems many parents are just upset that their built-in baby sitter isn't there for them currently. While I understand coming to school … Read More

      I am a teacher with autoimmune disease thus I am risk. I love teaching, but I’m scared to go back to a classroom of students. While our leaders make it sound easy, those of us who have taught know that keeping students 6+ feet apart, etc. is difficult at best.

      Further it seems many parents are just upset that their built-in baby sitter isn’t there for them currently. While I understand coming to school for an education is better than distance learning, do these parents care about the health of their children and their teachers? I’m no longer a young man and I don’t wish to die because I was forced back into an unsafe workplace. I wonder if schools will even be able to acquire substitute teachers if full-time teachers are out sick or in the hospital with this disease.

  63. Lee 4 months ago4 months ago

    How will this affect itinerant teachers? I provide one-to-one sessions with 61 students who have hearing loss at 21 schools.

  64. Robert Phillips 4 months ago4 months ago

    I think Newsom is doing a great job. He has really shown some great leadership during these dark times. Very proud of him.

  65. r stephens 4 months ago4 months ago

    So Gavin Newsom thinks classrooms are going to grow so we can have 35 students sitting in a classroom 6 feet apart?

  66. Jeff Camp 4 months ago4 months ago

    Federal funds should be allocated to extend the school year online. Letting kids out for the summer will compound risks of second-wave resurgence of the pandemic. Federal one-time funds are critical for this idea — districts and states don’t have the money to make it happen.

  67. Nancy Hull 4 months ago4 months ago

    Kindergarten & first grade teachers, we catch everything our first year, then develop immunity. I would bet a lot of teachers have already been exposed and have immunity. Test any of them that are willing. If the teacher has antibodies, then test as many of their students as possible from this year to see if they have antibodies. If the doctors are fairly sure they have immunity, those kids and teachers can be in a regular classroom.

  68. Pamela L Thompson 4 months ago4 months ago

    The first ones to come back into the brick and mortar schools should be the youngest, smallest, students. So that their parents/guardians can get back to work if they need to. Make sure there are enough school aides to assist with this process. Gradually stagger the return to school among the next older group, the next older group, and then the oldest group. Make sure that there are enough school medical … Read More

    The first ones to come back into the brick and mortar schools should be the youngest, smallest, students. So that their parents/guardians can get back to work if they need to. Make sure there are enough school aides to assist with this process. Gradually stagger the return to school among the next older group, the next older group, and then the oldest group. Make sure that there are enough school medical professionals in each county to be readily available to every campus. While students are waiting at home use digital distance learning aligned with state standards.