LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — The Pasadena Unified, Long Beach Unified and Glendale Unified school districts announced Tuesday that campuses will remain closed for the beginning of the school year due to the rising number of COVID-19 cases.
Pasadena Unified Superintendent Brian McDonald said the district's 23 schools will begin instruction on Aug. 17 with a 100% distance-learning model.
"All of us would like to see students back in school when it's safe to do so. But Los Angeles County has recorded a surge in new cases in the last week, with a 9% rate of positive cases," McDonald wrote in a letter to the PUSD community.
"We cannot and will not take chances with the health and safety of our students and staff. I plan to bring a recommendation to the Board of Education at a special meeting on July 16 that Pasadena Unified open in a 100% distance learning model on August 17."
McDonald also said the district has been preparing for the possibility of distancing learning and will continue to monitor and evaluate public health conditions and guidelines.
The district's school board had previously announced the school year would begin with a combination of in-person and distance learning.
Also Tuesday, Long Beach Unified School District announced it will begin the new school year with online courses following the announcements of other districts.
The Glendale Unified School District confirmed as well that its board decided students will be learning virtually when their new school year kicks off Aug. 19. However, the district said it will be providing childcare for certain elementary age students during this time.
"The district will offer on-campus childcare during the regular school day for elementary-age students, prioritizing students currently enrolled in state-subsidized childcare programs, foster/homeless youth, and children of essential workers," the district said in a news release.
On Monday, the Orange County Board of Education voted 4-1 to recommend opening campuses next month without masks or social distancing, but the decision is not binding on any of the county's districts.
Earlier that day, Los Angeles Unified School District Superintendent Austin Beutner said LAUSD campuses will remain closed when classes resume next month.
(© Copyright 2020 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. City News Service contributed to this report.)
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