SAN DIEGO, CA — San Diego Unified School District campuses will remain closed due to the coronavirus pandemic when the district resumes classes for the new school year, the district announced Monday.
San Diego Unified and Los Angeles Unified school districts announced March 13 — four months ago — that district schools would shut down March 16 in an effort to prevent the spread of the virus. Both school districts issued another joint statement Monday announcing that the new school year will start with classes remaining online only.
The two largest school districts in California serve more than 750,000 students combined.
“Much has changed since that time: New research is available, additional information on school safety experiences from around the world, and updated health guidelines from state and county leaders,” district officials said in a joint statement.
“Unfortunately, much of the research is incomplete and many of the guidelines are vague and contradictory. One fact is clear: Those countries that have managed to safely reopen schools have done so with declining infection rates and on-demand testing available. California has neither. The skyrocketing infection rates of the past few weeks make it clear the pandemic is not under control.”
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Instruction will resume on Aug. 18 in Los Angeles Unified and Aug. 31 in San Diego Unified.
Both districts will continue planning for a return to in-person classes during the 2020-21 school year, as soon as public health conditions allow, according to the districts.
“Our leaders owe it to all of those impacted by the COVID-19 closures to increase the pace of their work,” district officials said.
“No one should use the delay in the reopening of classrooms as a reason to relax. The coronavirus has not taken a summer vacation, as many had hoped. Indeed, the virus has accelerated its attacks on our community.”
San Diego Unified plans to provide a public assessment on Aug. 10 of how soon in-person classes would be possible. The assessment will be based on local measures of whether the virus is “sufficiently under control,” as well as progress on testing and federal action on funding, according to the district.
The district is slated to also outline the physical measures planned for each school to guard against the pandemic and detail the online learning program for the school year.
This article originally appeared on the San Diego Patch