CALIFORNIA—On July 13, California’s two largest school districts, Los Angeles and San Diego, announced that all public schools will go online-only in fall 2020.

The Los Angeles Unified School District and San Diego Unified School District enroll approximately 825,000 students in total. Partial in-person teaching schedules were previously discussed in May, but have since been abandoned in place of online classes.

A joint statement from both the Los Angeles Unified School District and San Diego Unified School District announced that classes will be online only beginning August, but both districts are planning for an in-person return sometime in the middle of the 2020-2021 school term.

“New research is available, additional information on school safety experiences from around the world, and updated health guidelines from state and county leaders. Unfortunately, much of the research is incomplete and many of the guidelines are vague and contradictory. One fact is clear: those countries that have managed to safely reopen schools have done so with declining infection rates and on-demand testing available. California has neither. The skyrocketing infection rates of the past few weeks make it clear the pandemic is not under control. Therefore, we are announcing that the new school year will start online only. Instruction will resume on August 18 in Los Angeles Unified and August 31 in San Diego Unified, as previously scheduled. Both districts will continue planning for a return to in-person learning during the 2020-21 academic year, as soon as public health conditions allow,” reads a joint statement from both districts.

While the school year will remain online for now, both school districts agreed they will continue maintaining certain measures in the meantime. Some of measures include:

  • Maintaining the normal schedule of the school year
  • Teachers will receive expanded training to make online education better for students
  • Students will receive additional training at the start of the year to become better online learners
  • Online support will be available for parents, making it easier for them to participate in the education of their children
  • Free meals will continue to be provided to students are current distribution centers.

The Los Angeles and San Diego Unified School Districts will continue to monitor the situation, and provide additional information and updates in the coming weeks.