Lake Elsinore Unified School District

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Superintendent's Message

About the 2020-21 Reopening of Schools Safely Under COVID-19

The new school year for students starts on Wednesday, August 12, only a short time away.


Prior to the Governor’s July 17th mandate* for full distance learning to open the 2020-21 school year, we have been planning to open schools under three potential scenarios: a) traditional model; b) hybrid model both in class and at home; and c) distance learning.


Throughout the summer, we have worked on plans with a variety of stakeholders, as well as our bargaining units: LETA and CSEA. We surveyed our parent community and found, as expected, the vast majority want their children to attend school as normal (62%). We have collaborated via weekly teleconferences with RCOE and the Riverside University Health System-Public Health Department.


SB 98 clearly gave direction that face-to-face instruction is the State’s priority, despite the COVID-19 pandemic is more severe in areas of the state than others. Recently, LEUSD and other districts in Riverside County announced they were prepared to reopen school using full distance learning.* This position was reinforced by Governor Newsom in his school reopening press conference on Friday, July 17, 2020, setting forth distance learning as the standard for reopening across most of southern California and other parts of the state, dependent upon the COVID-19 situation in affected counties. (Riverside County is among the 30+ counties being monitored out of concern for high COVID-19 case numbers and greater positivity rates among those tested.)


LEUSD has taken safety of staff and students as a paramount importance all summer. Our process for cleaning and disinfecting has been monumental, and the process will be ongoing. Our semi-weekly School Reopening Countdown correspondence has laid out our protocols for safety and health, among other relevant topics for reopening this fall.


Our Board meeting on August 6 will allow Trustees to formalize the Governor’s mandate for school reopening under full distance learning. We have developed all plans and variations will health and safety in mind. If you need more information on those protocols, please let us know. As we get closer to the August school start, rest assured we have considerable planning and instructional resources ready to put in place.

* On July 17, 2020, Governor Newsom announced the 2020-21 fall reopening of schools would be a full distance model for affected counties on the state monitoring list for COVID-19. On July 16, 2020 LEUSD publicly announced its intention to begin with full distance learning PHASE 1, one day before the Governor's mandate was unveiled. LEUSD will officially begin 2020-21 virtual classes for students on Wednesday, August 12, 2020. Distance learning for all LEUSD students will remain until Riverside County has exited the state monitoring list for 14 consecutive days, after which the district may consider entering PHASE 2, or a hybrid readmission of students to campuses. For parents who voluntarily signed up for full distance learning for their children during 2020-21, LEUSD will continue to support their students with remote learning from home, while all other students will automatically be subject to PHASE 2 reopening.