When will California schools reopen? Gov. Newsom has some ideas

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- California's Governor Gavin Newsom held a press conference on Tuesday released a detailed plan for easing social distancing guidelines amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Although he didn't give an exact date on when schools would reopen, he did give some ideas on what could look like when that day comes.

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"We need to get our kids educated. We need to deal with their mental health and parent's mental health. It's hard to educate your kids and then take care of everybody else," said Gov. Newsom.

The new vision of school will include social distancing within the school.

"They can come in as cohorts in the morning and some in the afternoon. We have to work of course with our union and others in management to figure something like that out," said Gov. Newsom.

A sentiment many parents like Sarah Baltazar share, but not without some hesitation.

"I don't think it's fair to put teachers or folks who work at school buildings in jeopardy just because I'm struggling as a home school parent. Ultimately it has to be safe for our whole community," said Baltazar.

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Salazar has been teaching her 7 and 2 and a half year old for weeks. Every day is a new lesson for her and her daughter and they navigate distance learning together.

"Today on a call a kid said 'over Spring Break my grandpa died of COVID-19, but he lived until he was 87.' They are 7 years old. This is hard. It's hard for parents to watch and then how do I help her cope and continue to learn?" said Salazar.

Governor Newsom spoke about the need for deep cleaning prior to reopening schools.

"Not just in our schools but disinfecting our parks, benches, our swings, our sidewalks, and streets," said Gov. Newsom.

A new perspective that many across the state learned about Tuesday. Including Oakland Unified School district with 37,000 students and 83 schools.

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John Sasaki spokesman for Oakland's Unified School District says they still need to wait on guidance from the California Department of Education before moving forward.

"We are going to be working with our public health expert and making sure that anything that we do in regard to opening school is done in the safest way possible," said Sasaki.

Sasaki doesn't believe schools will reopen any time before the end of this school year, "We're closed until the end of May. It won't be then maybe in June. Maybe in July."

San Francisco Unified School District responded to Governor Gavin Newsom with this statement:

SFUSD is committed to continuing to work closely with public health officials in determining when and how to reopen schools. Just as the time of school closures has required massive changes in how we provide some continuity of learning for our students, we anticipate that we may need to change our practices upon reopening schools.

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