Students in California are unlikely to return to campuses this year because of safety concerns and recommendations by health officials to follow social distancing practices due to the coronavirus outbreak, State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond wrote in an email to county superintendents.
“We are urging a safety first approach out of an abundance of caution,” Thurmond wrote. “As such, we urge that all school districts in California move towards and/or continue to strengthen their distance learning programs and opportunities for students.
“We believe this sustains the safety of our students and families, provides consistency across schools in the state and provides our districts and educators with clarity and the ability to plan for delivering education for the rest of this school year through a distance learning model.”
To help teachers with remote instruction, the California Department of Education will provide webinars and other types of training, Thurmond wrote.
Thurmond said the department is working to forge "public-private partnerships with leaders in technology and the philanthropic sector to help expand home devices and internet access where possible and where available resources and donations allow."
Photo: Getty Images