Castaic Union School District announces plan to return to full day, in-person instruction

Castaic Union School District Building. Dan Watson/The Signal

Castaic Union School District administrators announced Wednesday their plans to have full-day, in-person instruction for students and teachers by April 19.  

In a statement distributed to district families, Castaic officials said the schedule would mirror the one they followed before COVID-19, a move away from the blended learning model they had implemented earlier this month when case rates were higher.  

This latest decision comes on the heels of a Los Angeles County Department of Public Health statement on Tuesday that the county may be eligible to move to the less restrictive orange tier as soon as early April due to these declining numbers.  

Additionally, the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health approved on March 22 new health guidelines for classrooms, changing the social distancing within a classroom setting from a minimum of 6 feet to a minimum of 3 feet, allowing school sites to have full classroom groups return to learning at the same time.  

Castaic officials said the schedule will include four full days and one minimum day on Wednesday, and families that are still doing distance learning, and wish to continue to do so, will remain on distance learning for the remainder of the school year. 

“We are able to accomplish this with the recent change in social distancing to (3 feet) between students and there are still many families that are continuing with distance learning,” Castaic officials said in their announcement. “All of the current rules still apply with (6 feet) social distancing everywhere else. Masks are mandatory as well as hand washing.” 

The Saugus Union School District sent a letter to parents on Wednesday that said their governing board announced their decision to give Superintendent Colleen Hawkins the authority to implement the new social distancing guidance for the classroom.  

However, the Saugus trustees did not make a decision Tuesday on whether to return to full-day instruction, citing the need for more time to figure out and implement the scheduling system and start date for longer days on campus at all 15 of the district’s school sites.  

“Because some of these items are essential to announcing the official start date, we are notifying families that this change is coming, but the official start date will be announced by the end of next week,” said the letter to parents.  

The William S. Hart Union High School District is scheduled to begin its new learning model next week, with the first wave of students coming in on Monday and the second wave arriving April 1.   


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