Anna Caballero introduces bill to boost independent study oversight.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

On the night of Oct. 16, 2015, Social Services officials requested a welfare check for Delylah and Shaun Tara, 3 and 7, who were living in Salinas with their guardian, second cousin Tami Huntsman. Salinas Police knocked on the front door. No answer. Two months later, their bodies were found in a storage unit in Redding.

The killings were haunting enough that former assemblymember Luis Alejo (now a Monterey County supervisor) and Assemblymember Anna Caballero, D-Salinas, both tried legislating preventive measures.

Alejo’s AB 2380 provides more information to incarcerated parents about background checks for guardians of their kids.

Caballero has introduced AB 318, which would mandate independent study students have visual or in-person contact with a school administrator at least once a week. Independent study allows public school students to study in a nontraditional setting, such as their home, for a period of time.

“It’s a simple interaction, but it’s enough to keep track of students who don’t go to public school every day,” Caballero says. Current law requires vocal or visual contact once every other week.