SHUSD Parents in Favor of Hybrid, In-Person Classroom Instruction
We, the concerned citizens who support the Southern Humboldt Unified School District, would like to show our support for a move to the “Stage Two Hybrid Learning Model,” as presented by the district’s staff at the Board of Trustees meeting held on August 6, 2020.
We appreciate the district’s hard work in creating a reopening phases plan that is tied to the Humboldt County Covid-19 Dashboard’s overall alert levels. This dashboard is tied to the State’s Blueprint for a Safer Economy (https://covid19.ca.gov/safer-economy/), and this blueprint clearly outlines stages for the safe re-opening of schools based on four stages of risk: minimal, moderate, substantial, and widespread. Currently, Humboldt County falls in the moderate risk category, which, when compared to SHUSD’s reopening phases, would place us firmly in stage two: the hybrid model of learning.
Distance learning in our rural area is leaving many kids behind due to a lack of access to the internet. Given that the State Department of Education has made it clear that we must maintain equity for all, it is evident that our district is unable to provide this utilizing the current distance learning model, unless we base learning on self-directed packet work. We firmly assert that this is not an acceptable education and given state guidelines, we are considered safe to re-open.
Furthermore, we’d also like to note that there are currently lawsuits filed against the state on behalf of parents, charter schools, private schools, and the Orange County Board of Education. The law firm that took these writ petitions to the California Supreme Court states that “the California Constitution requires that all children receive an equal education. Our position is that he [Governor Newsom] is creating an unequal burden on economically disadvantaged students.” (Gahr, Evan. “California Supreme Court Orders Gov. Newsom to Justify School Closure Orders.” 26 Aug. 2020.)
This lawsuit is in response to the California Blueprint for a Safer Economy where schools who fall in the “widespread” category must instruct students via distance learning only. We want to reiterate that Humboldt County is cleared to open according to the state guidelines and yet, we are keeping our doors closed. In doing so, we are denying our students their constitutional right to an equitable education.
Please consider voting to reopen our schools, utilizing the hybrid learning model, beginning as soon as possible.
Thank you for your consideration.
Supporters of SHUSD