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UPDATE: BCSD going virtual-only for start of new school year

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UPDATE: The Bakersfield City School District board of education unanimously approved a recommendation today from the district to have distance learning only for the beginning of the upcoming school year.

According to the district, distance learning is currently only set for the first grading period, after which the district would re-evaluate and the board would decide whether to continue that or move to some level of in-person instruction. The board made the decision during a special meeting this afternoon.

“Our board believes the best place for our students during this challenging and uncertain time is in the classroom, surrounded by a school system established to support their educational and social and emotional well-being, however as much as we want students back in school, we cannot do so until it is safe for all,” Superintendent Doc Ervin said in a statement. “We understand the stress this may place on our families and staff as students learn from home. Please know we are working to support our students, staff, and families to the furthest extent possible.”

The district’s Return to School Plan currently offers two options for in-person instruction later in the school year: Two days in school and three days of virtual instruction or a distance-only option for those who want to continue learning from home.

Under the plan, transportation would only be provided to special education students who require it. Meals would be available to both in-person and virtual learning students through a Grab and Go structure.

“BCSD will continue planning for a return to in-person learning during the 2020-21 academic year, as soon as public health conditions allow,” Ervin said. “This pandemic is not over, and unfortunately, many challenges still lie ahead. We ask for your continued support as we rise to the challenge and imagine the greatness we anticipate in the future.”

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