Silicon Valley seeks solutions for affordable teacher housing

PALO ALTO, Calif. (KGO) -- More than 100 teachers gathered at Gunn High School in Palo Alto Thursday evening, hoping to hear solutions to what they call a housing crisis. They can't afford to live where they work.

One after one they shared their stories.

Some live with their parents, many have roommates and still spend the majority of their income on rent. One teacher, who's a single mother, said she and her daughter were, at one point, living in the den of a one bedroom apartment.

Others had to move out of the area and now commute an hour or more to their job.

Santa Clara County supervisor Joe Simitian facilitated the meeting and deferred to a panel of experts for solutions.

All agree that having teachers live near the school where they work benefits the students and the entire community. It also helps retain high quality teachers.

Earlier this week, Supervisor Simitian put forth a plan to turn a public parking lot near the Palo Alto Courthouse into teacher housing. The board voted to approve the project.

Simitian hopes it's more than a one-time solution. He hopes it becomes a model for other communities.
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