LOS ANGELES COUNTY —Today, Supervisor Kathryn Barger sent a letter to Governor Gavin Newsom asking for the immediate reopening of schools, grades TK-12, in Los Angeles County.

“It has been 11 months since the state closed L.A. County schools, and during this time, we have witnessed a significant academic, social and emotional decline in our children and youth,” said Supervisor Barger. “I am urging Governor Newsom to allow for the immediate reopening of schools to provide in-person learning, which is critical for the development of our school-age children.”

The state previously created a waiver program for schools to apply to reopen, during which L.A. County allowed the reopening of schools for grades TK-2nd. The ability to apply for these waivers ended on Jan. 14 as set by the state, with the caveat that only those schools that had reopened with approved waivers could remain open. Under the current guidelines, any school that had not applied for a waiver, or who had received a waiver but not reopened prior to Jan. 14, would have to wait to reopen in-person instruction for any grade until the case rate in Los Angeles County falls below 25 cases per 100,000 people per day for five consecutive days. Furthermore, no schools in the county may open for in-person instruction for grades 7-12 while the county remains in Tier 1 (Purple Widespread Tier).

In her letter, Supervisor Barger expressed grave concerns regarding any further delays and asked Governor Newsom to consider allowing all K-6 classrooms to reopen and to enable all counties in Tier 1 to open grades 7-12.

“The safety of reopening classrooms has been well-documented worldwide and is supported by the Centers for Disease Control,” said Supervisor Barger. “California remains one of the only places in the world where the vast majority of schools have remained closed – causing detrimental impacts for children and their families. They cannot and should not have to wait another day to get back to school.”

Thank You