from SF Board of Education Commissioner Jenny Lam
regarding new CDC guidelines
January 29, 2021 - I am thrilled to see new schools guidelines released yesterday by the Centers for Disease Control. In short, it states that children should return to classrooms.
The message from the CDC cites evidence that in-person instruction could be safe if mask-wearing and social distancing are maintained.
For many months now, I have been calling for a return to our schools. Students are struggling mightily in this pandemic. Shuttered schools and Distance Learning have shut the majority of our students -- including Black and Brown and those with special needs -- out of education. And with that shut-out has come a myriad mental child issues including isolation, food insecurity, and worse. We must return to in-person learning safely.
On November 19 of last year, the Board adopted Resolution 2011-10A1 “SFUSD Return to School Safely.” I co-authored it with my colleague and now President Gabriela Lopez. Per the resolution, SFUSD will develop and present to the Board of Education a SFUSD Return Plan, including a phased plan and timeline for grades PK-12. The plan will ensure that students and families who wish to continue with remote learning may do so.
As a city, we need to focus squarely on putting schools first. As a district, and city, we must devote all available resources toward safely and systematically returning our students back to classrooms where they learn best.
It is my priority that this plan move forward with this plan. I encourage SFUSD leadership to focus on this plan.