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Santa Maria-Bonita School District teachers instructed to report to school even though students won't be there

Posted at 7:04 PM, Mar 14, 2020

While most schools across the Central Coast announced this week they will be closing to avoid the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19), one local district has instructed teachers to continue reporting to their schools.

Teachers in the Santa Maria-Bonita School District say they've been told to report to schools as usual even though their students won't be there.

“For my members, that’s a big concern. If we are going to close schools to help deter the spread of COVID-19 and to keep students and staff safe, then it doesn’t make sense to have staff going to report to work,” said Jose Segura, the President of the Santa Maria Elementary Education Association.

According to Segura, teachers who don't report to work will need to use their sick days.

The Santa Maria-Bonita School District said in a statement to KSBY they are adhering by Governor Gavin Newsom's executive order to "continue delivering high-quality educational opportunities to students through other options, distance learning and independent study” in order to continue receiving state funding.

Part of those options include providing each student with a laptop and charger to take home. They are also working on providing meals to students even though they won't be in class.

The district also added that it is working on a plan that would allow employees with children to bring their children to work.

Segura said that's a major concern for teachers.

“We have the technology to work remotely. If we can work remotely with students from our classrooms on our campus, then we can sure do it from our homes or somewhere where we feel safe and are able to be with our families during this difficult time,” said Segura.

As of Saturday afternoon, there is not a set return date for students to be back in their classrooms.