More Than 40 School Principals Told to Quarantine After COVID-19 Exposure

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More than 40 school principals in the South Bay were told to quarantine after being exposed to COVID-19 two weeks ago.

The exposure happened at an in-person meeting called by the Santa Clara Unified School District. An attendee who didn't have any symptoms at the meeting testing positive for the virus just days later. 

Now many are asking why the district would have even called an in-person meeting at all.

“I'm mad, I’m disappointed, I’m concerned," said parent Bonnie Lieberman.

She has mixed emotions after dozens of school principals were exposed to COVID-19 at a face-to-face school district leadership meeting two weeks ago.

"There were over forty people in the room,” said Lieberman. “It doesn’t give me or any other parents much confidence that the district can make appropriate decisions about safety.”

Last week, the district superintendent confirmed the exposure during an online meeting with the school board, but says the district didn’t do anything wrong.

“Given the complexities of our reopening, some of our staff meetings are taking place in person,” said Stella Kemp, SCUSD superintendent. “Of course those meetings are being conducted under the strict guidelines provided to us by the Santa Clara County Public Health Department.”

And she says it’s a sign of the times. “This is exactly the dilemma that every district is facing now. We’re trying to  figure out how best to keep our students and staff safe in an environment where the vast majority of things around us are out of our control.”

But some on the board seem unconvinced, especially since county guidance says indoor meetings should be 10 or fewer.

“I can’t imagine being a person at that meeting and being exposed as well,” said trustee Vickie Fairchild. “Can you imagine if you had health conditions as well?”

Kemp said everyone exposed was tested and quarantined. She says to her knowledge no one else who was at the meeting tested positive.

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