Los Angeles County Should Open Elementary School Waiver Processes Immediately

Los Angeles County Should Open Elementary School Waiver Processes Immediately

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Concerned Parent started this petition to Mayor of Los Angeles Eric Garcetti and

There are nearly 800,000 students in elementary schools throughout Los Angeles County that are currently attending classes online. The State of California allows for each county to decide if elementary schools and districts can open for in person classes through waiver processes.  The initial criteria for allowing elementary school waivers was determined in July when The State of California's Watch List was in place.  The criteria stated that any county with less than 200 new cases of covid per 100,000 population could begin to process waivers for elementary schools and districts. Los Angeles County has met this requirement since August and as of early September is by far exceeding this metric.  Every neighboring county to Los Angeles, even in some where covid is more widespread (by monitored metrics including positive testing percentage, new population adjusted cases or hospital and ICU bed availability), have already started reviewing waivers for elementary schools including Orange, Ventura, Kern, Riverside, Santa Barbara and San Bernardino counties.  To date, Los Angeles County has not started the waiver process for elementary schools. 

The State of California is one of the most strict states in the country in terms of covid reopening requirements.  The State of California currently allows Los Angeles County to start the elementary school waiver process, but The County's public officials have chosen not to consider at this time without specific reasons or quantitative goals.

Elementary schools and districts that require masks at all grade levels, social distance, teach in small groups of students (daily or via split classes alternating days), enforce protocols for sick children within "pods" and implement regular sanitization should be allowed to apply for waivers to reopen.  Schools have demonstrated the ability to quickly flex between virtual and in-person learning as well as offer both options for children and families who are immunocompromised. Should covid cases begin to rise again, schools can quickly go back to distanced learning. Many schools and districts have prepared to reopen fin person or months, but to date Los Angeles County will not consider reviewing their plans.

As long as The State of California allows Los Angeles County to begin waiver processes for elementary schools and districts, The County should consider their applications.  Elementary school children are at risk of complications from covid, but are also at risk of significant social, emotional and cognitive developmental delays from not being in school.  Video conferencing for elementary school is not an appropriate substitute for in-person learning, especially for our youngest children who are statistically in the lowest risk group from covid complications.  Our youngest children also have the most difficult time learning via video conferencing. 

We urge Los Angeles County to start waiver processes for elementary schools immediately.

0 have signed. Let’s get to 2,500!
At 2,500 signatures, this petition is more likely to get picked up by local news!