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Newsom unveils plan for California schools to reopen in February


#Gov. #Gavin #Newsom on #Wednesday announced a $2 billion plan to push #California’s schools to begin allowing their youngest students to return to the classroom in #February.

“#As a parent of very young children, in person-instruction — there’s just no substitute for it. #It’s so much more difficult for a 4-year-old to focus on a device than a 14-year-old,” #Newsom said.

#Though a few districts opened when coronavirus cases were lower in early fall, most of #California’s 6 million public school students have been learning remotely since the pandemic began last #March.

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#Newsom already has dubbed teachers and school staff next in line to receive a coronavirus vaccination, behind health care workers and residents of long-term care facilities.

#Under #Newsom’s plan, schools that reopen would receive an average of $450 per student, according to the #Los #Angeles #Times.

The governor’s $2 billion budget proposal would channel money into #Personal #Protection #Equipment (PPE), testing and other safety measures, with a focus on kindergarten through second grade.

#Priority also will be given to special needs students, those in foster care and those who are homeless, along with schools with many low-income students or #English learners.

NEWSOM RECALL EFFORT JUST GOT A MAJOR BOOST

#Parents still have the option to keep children in remote learning if their schools reopen.

The state also will launch a public database of transmission in schools, after #Californians complained that the state has provided little information on school reopenings or infection rates among students.

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The plan is expected to be submitted to the state #Legislature as an amendment to the proposed budget.

#California faces all-time highs in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations. #Facilities in #Southern #California are running out of bed space and healthcare leadership is beginning to discuss the possibility of having to ration care.

#But as public health officials assure that schools pose a relatively low level of transmission, #Newsom said his new plan would kick in when counties reduce their cases to below 28 per 100,000 residents, four times the rate #California previously allowed schools to reopen without waivers. The state’s current average is 93 new cases per 100,000 residents.

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#Californians assailed #Newsom for not doing enough to push for schools to reopen, particularly after the governor acknowledged that his four children, ages 4 to 11, were returning to the classroom in a hybrid format in their private school.

#Meanwhile, #Republicans continue to gather signatures to recall the governor and earned a $600,000 boost to aid their efforts earlier this week. #According to a filing released #Tuesday, #Irvine-based consulting firm #Prov 3:9, LLC  donated $500,000 to the recall efforts while #Douglas #Leone, managing partner of the #Menlo #Park based-venture captial firm #Sequoia #Capital, and his wife #Patricia #Perkins-Leone donated a combined $100,000.

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#Implementation of the plan could face hurdles with teachers’ unions and their collective bargaining agreements. #State lawmakers earlier this month introduced legislation that would force schools in #California counties to open once they moved from the most-restrictive “purple” tier to the “red” tier. #Current policy makes it optional for schools to reopen in less restrictive tiers.



[ source link ]
https://www.foxnews.com/politics/newsom-reopen-ca-schools-february

##Newsom #unveils #plan ##California #schools #reopen ##February

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