coronavirus pandemic

COVID-19 Outbreak Forces West Contra Costa District to Temporarily Close Campuses

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The West Contra Costa Unified School District has temporarily shut down campuses because of a spike in COVID-19 cases.

That means a brief return to remote learning for about 28,000 students across the East Bay district. It began with the closure of Martin Luther King Jr. Elementary School in Richmond, where initially 10 students in various grades tested positive Monday.

The temporary districtwide shutdown is scheduled for Friday and Monday so crews can conduct deep cleanings at all campuses.

West Contra Costa Unified School District has temporarily shut down Martin Luther King Junior Elementary in Richmond because of a spike in COVID-19 cases. Marianne Favro reports.

Mayra Molina and her son Matthew went back to Martin Luther King Jr. Elementary on Wednesday to pick up class materials.

Coming off the winter break, first grader Matthew said he only attended one day of school before he and his family learned there was a spike in COVID-19 cases that would force all students to switch to distance-learning.

Mayra and Mathew said that they are OK with that decision.

“It’s good. I like it. Sometimes I get bored,” Matthew Molina said.

Yanira Figueroa’s sons both attend the school. She said that she feels they'll be safer learning at home right now.

“This week, a lot of kids tested positive for COVID-19. So, it’s better that they study at home,” Figueroa said.

The district wanted to slow the spread - and have time do contact tracing - so it switched to remote learning.

Richmond parent Maria, who asked NBC Bay Area not to be identified with her full name said it will be tough to make the transition on such short notice.

“It’s difficult because I work and now, I will have to find someone to help my kid. Also it’s hard for him to focus from home on studying,” she said.

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