Solano County parents frustrated with distance learning create classroom in their garage

BENICIA, Calif. (KGO) -- Broken eggs and rotting yokes on a suburban sidewalk. Your house might also become a target if you put up a sign urging California schools to reopen.

"You can hide in the dark to do it, but your point will never be made because we don't know what you have to say," said Jimmy Ferrucci about the people who pelted his yard last weekend.

Jimmy and his wife Sarah made their statement months ago. You've heard of one room school houses? How about the two-car garage school house where the Ferrucci family, their kids and friends attend class together.

"We are advocating for our children. Standing up. Saying we want an option," said Sarah.

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The classes are taught on Zoom by teachers of the Benicia Unified School District. But instead of each child staying alone at home, 6th graders from Benicia Middle School take classes here.

"It is better here with my friends than socializing at home," said Alley Largaespada.

"Are you learning as much this way?" we asked Dominik Ferrucci.

"No," he said.

They have gathered five days a week since August, attending classes from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. They work together, lunch together, play together, and even have PE together -- experiences their parents try to make as normal as possible in these strange times.

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"I think it is absurd," said Alley's dad, Carlos Largaespada. "We are the only state where our kids can't go to school. Can't play sports. The social element for them is detrimental. Getting up in the morning to look at a computer screen? That sucks."

Out of curiosity, we asked for a show of hands. How many of the six students had been vaccinated. None.

How many have had COVID-19? None.

Granted, they're a small sample and living in a bit of an educational bubble, just one class in a garage with broken eggshells out front.


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