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Ways some California schools are working to keep students safe

Posted at 10:47 AM, Aug 13, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-13 13:47:10-04

(KERO) — Summer breaks are winding down and schools across the state are gearing up or already back in the classroom.

The return to in-person learning comes as cases of COVID in kids are increasing.

Adam Racusin with ABC10 in San Diego looks at the ways educators are working to keep students safe.

After a long, confusing and probably frustrating year and a half in-person school for most kids across the state is back or will be in the next few weeks.

The return to in person learning comes as the state scrambles to try and control a sharp rise in positive COVID cases.

One that's putting pressure on health systems.

"We're going to have increased COVID volume so we're trying to staff up as much as we can," said Dr. Ghazala Sharieff with Scripps Health.

Kids aren't immune from the virus.

Some school districts that are back are seeing cases.

At the Chula Vista Elementary School District in August, they've had four positive staff tests results and 16 positive student tests.

Most cases involving community spread are not spread at school.

The Sweetwater Union High School districts have been back since July.

Since they've been in school the districts reported 174 covid cases.

So what are educators doing to keep kids safe?

Most of the state guidance comes down to wearing masks indoors.

"This indoor masking requirement is really carrying the bulk of the prevention this year," said Bob Mueller, coordinator of special projects for the San Diego County Office of Education.

"Schools and school districts have a ton of discretion this year and really the big challenge for them is remembering all of the prevention lessons they learned last year."

One of those discretions is testing.

It's not mandated by the state but some districts like San Diego Unified, the second largest in the state, are making it a practice.

And on Wednesday, California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced the state will require all teachers and school staff to show proof of vaccination or submit to regular testing.

"We think this is a sustainable way to keeping our schools and to address the number one anxiety that parents like myself have I have four young children and that is knowing that the schools are doing everything in their power to keep our kids safe," said Newsom.

While there's a whole host of guidance for positive tests and quarantines, educators say there are a lot of safety, hygiene, and sanitation procedures in place.

All designed to keep kids in the classroom and safe.