Gov. Gavin Newsom on Wednesday 12/30/202 introduced a phased reopening plan for getting children back into school classrooms, possibly as early as February 2021.
The $2 billion framework is designed to prioritize youngest students, beginning with transitional kindergarten through second grade. The plan also prioritizes children with disabilities and those who have struggled more than most with distance learning.
To reopen, schools will be required to draft a coronavirus safety plan and submit it to the state for approval. Newsom plans to ramp up testing at schools and provide teachers with protective gear such as millions of surgical masks for free.
The state also plans to launch a public contact tracing system that will track infections among students and educators. Educators and school staff will also be classes as essential workers and get vaccinated during Phase 1B of distribution.