Asm. Robert Rivas Applauds Plan to Start Safely Reopening California Schools this Month
Legislature Passes Assembly Bill 86, the Safe Schools for All Plan
SACRAMENTO – Assemblymember Robert Rivas (D-Hollister) released this statement upon the Legislature passing Assembly Bill 86, the Safe Schools for All Plan, which will result in California’s youngest and most high-need students returning to school later this month:
One year ago this month, COVID-19 turned our world upside-down. Our state has suffered over 50,000 deaths and over 3.5 million cases from this pandemic, which is why we need to ensure that any school reopening plan properly accounts for the safety and wellbeing of our children, educators, and communities. As the father of a five-year old, I’m also acutely aware of the need to get our kids back to school as soon as possible, to ensure they get the education and social development that only in-person instruction can provide.
Assembly Bill 86, a compromise effort between the Governor and Legislature, lays out a plan based on data and science to get our kids back in the classroom safely and in a timely manner. This critical legislation, the Safe Schools for All Plan, will provide billions of dollars in funding for COVID-19 testing, protective equipment, and safety upgrades at schools. The Plan also ensures the state prioritizes teachers and staff for vaccine doses and provides $4.6 billion to fund learning loss mitigation initiatives.
Every family in this state has been forced to sacrifice during the pandemic, and now we can almost see the light at the end of the tunnel. AB 86 will provide a pathway forward for our youngest and most vulnerable students in all grades to get back in the classroom by the end of the month. The bill provides a safe and phased approach for reopening all public schools to all California students for in-person instruction this year.
It’s time for our kids to go back to school, but to go back safely. I applaud the Governor and Legislature for working together to deliver a plan to make this happen.
The Safe Schools for All Plan (AB 86) includes:
- $2 billion for testing, PPE, and ventilation and other safety upgrades
- Sets aside 10% of state’s vaccine doses for education staff
- $4.6 billion will fund multi-year learning loss mitigation plans
- California’s youngest and most high-need students in all grades will return to in-person learning this month, including, but not limited to:
- All TK-2nd grade students
- students with disabilities
- foster and homeless youth
- English language learners
- A safe and phased approach to reopening all public schools to all students for in-person instruction this year
For more information, visit: https://schools.covid19.ca.gov/