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All Santa Ynez Valley Schools will remain closed till next year!

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By Jana Baltazar/ Solvang Journal Editor

COVID-19 causes California and including Santa Ynez Valley school closures for the remainder of the year.

To stem the ongoing tide of COVID-19, state Superintendent of Schools Tony Thurmond and California Gov. Gavin Newsom confirmed the closure of schools in the state through the end of the academic year.

“We’ve been in communication with superintendents around the state urging all our schools to proceed as if we can only educate our kids through distance learning for the remainder of the school year,” Thurmond said on Wednesday. “Quite frankly, none of us knows when it’s safe enough for students to return to campus.”

In Solvang and other neighboring places, classes are done through high-quality distance learning as per the agreement of Gov. Newsom with the teachers and school management system. The agreement includes a framework of a joint effort for school employers and employees to cooperate and collaborate on matters of labor and management to make it easier for the students. This includes direction on the implementation and delivery of distance learning, special education, and meals through the end of the school year.

In addition, the California Department of Education will conduct webinars and training and is making partnerships with leaders in the technology and philanthropic sector to ease the burden of those affected.

The governor said Google is lending a helping hand by creating 100,000 points of access to provide free and unlimited high-speed Internet connectivity, especially in the rural areas. Moreover, Google CEO clarified that the company, in partnership with the state, will be providing 4,000 Chromebook laptops to California students as well.

On a more personal note, Gov. Newsom empathizes with parents and guardians knowing how hard it must be at this time. However, he assured that they will get all the help they need regarding safety, education, and everyday provision.