Keeping Up In The Classroom

Masks and Sanitizing Stations: Here's What to Expect When Students Return to School

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Bay Area educators are working to implement 55 pages of state guidelines ahead of the upcoming school year.

The California guidelines for schools resuming classes during the pandemic was released weeks ago. Some of the school safety measures include wearing masks and social distancing, but others are happening inside school buildings students have not seen since March.

San Jose's East Side Union High School District ordered and received 350,000 disposable masks along with face shield for every staff member. There are now permanent hand sanitizing station and disinfectant filling stations on campuses.

The district is planning for social distancing in the classroom once students return.

School districts in the Bay Area are working to make the protocols work for students of different ages and with different needs. The East Side Union High School District superintendent said he understands why parents were desperate for answers because he was too.

"Our frustration is that the data kept changing week by week, by week and not getting strong leadership from the state or the feds and up until the last two weeks until they finally came out and we have a clear path to move forward," East Side Union High School District Superintendent Chris Funk said.

That includes guidelines for when students and staff return to school and someone gets sick.

  • If one person tests positive for coronavirus, the whole class or cohort goes home and quarantines for 14 days.
  • If 5% of a school's population has COVID-19, the whole campus shuts down for two weeks.
  • If testing shows 25% of students in a district are positive for coronavirus, the entire district must quarantine for 14 days.

So what happens if people are not following health and safety standards at school? The East Side Union High School District has an anonymous tip line, but the superintendent encourages parents and staff to go to school leadership first, then to the superintendent if they do not feel heard.

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