Dublin Unified School District will reopen schools full-time, five days a week, starting in the new academic year this August, Interim Superintendent Daniel Moirao announced at a Board of Trustees meeting on Tuesday night.
"The governor has said by June we're going to be fully open, and we as a school system are planning that for the fall, to be fully open," Moirao said.
In a report this week, the California Department of Public Health said, "If current trends and best practices continue, the next school year can begin with offering full in-person instruction to all students."
DUSD spokesperson Chip Dehnert told the Weekly, "The plan is to return to full-time, five days a week classes starting in the fall. We are talking about normal school, no cohorts, but possibly with masks."
Families who wish to stay in distance learning next year may do so, as Moirao acknowledged, "There may still be some families who want to be cautious, and we're exploring options for those families, but it's our plan right now to fully open our schools in the fall."
State officials said "health regulations and guidance will remain operative, but will be revised to reflect changing conditions -- including any adjustments to respond to variants -- and in consultation with federal, state and local partners."
Schools can also make use of a "historic level of state and federal funds, including $4.6 billion to expand learning opportunities" made available last month.
Officials said summer programming, planning for full time in-person instruction, maximizing the amount or value of instructional time through measures such as extending the school year and expanding academic intervention and mental health services, and "communicating with and educating families who may be reluctant to return to in-person instruction" should be treated as priorities.
Pleasanton Unified School District is combining and will have both secondary grade cohorts on site four days a week, starting on Monday (April 19). The schedules for Wednesdays will remain the same, and there is no change for the TK-5 schedules, as elementary students have already been attending on site four days a week.
In a recent message to the community, Superintendent David Haglund said, "I understand that some were hoping to see a longer day for our hybrid students, but we will not be moving in that direction between now and the end of the 2020-2021 school year."
Maintaining the current schedule "will enable teachers to support their remote learners effectively and eliminate the need to alter class assignments so late in the year," Haglund said.
Haglund added, "I appreciate your patience and understanding as we move forward and plan in earnest to bring all students back to campus full time for the 2021-2022 school year."
DUSD shared plans to hold graduation and promotion ceremonies later next month. Dehnert confirmed the district is "looking at how to host some sort of in-person event."
"This would not be graduation ceremonies as normal, but maybe breaking the graduating class down into smaller groups and having multiple ceremonies with gaps that allow for time to sanitize the facilities/equipment being used," Dehnert said.
On Tuesday, Moirao said the district is trying "to get to a different level of graduation rather than the drive-bys" done last year, and will need to follow mandatory guidelines including capacity caps, pre-registration and health screenings.
"Our principals at our middle schools and high schools are working with ed services right now to determine what is feasible and what can be done," Moirao said, and added that the district is anticipating additional guidance from the health department.
Valley High School will hold its graduation ceremony on May 26, and Dublin High's commencement ceremony is on May 28. Both ceremonies will be live streamed and recorded for viewing later.
Middle schools will notify families about the specific day and time for 8th-grade promotion ceremonies, which will be held May 26 to 28.
The board and district cabinet also remembered former trustee Catherine Kuo on Tuesday. The Area 3 representative was killed on March 24, after being hit by a car while volunteering at Fallon Middle School.
A vase of lilies sat in Kuo's former spot on the dais during the meeting -- the first since she died. Board President Dan Cherrier opened with a moment of silence in her honor.
Moirao called Kuo "truly a kind-hearted individual and truly committed trustee" who "loved this community, and serving it as a trustee." He said that Kuo often contacted him late in the evening to ask about different issues in the district.
"She would apologize for taking my time to answer those questions and I was never able to convince her that that was my job," Moirao said. "And I appreciated her for asking, rather than assuming."
The board will hold a discussion about the replacement process for Kuo at their April 27 regular meeting.