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School districts push back timelines, anticipating county's entrance into red tier on Tuesday

School districts serving junior high and high school students have readjusted their tentative reopening schedules, as they anticipate the county moving into the red tier of the state's reopening plan on Tuesday. 

When the county moves into the red tier, it will allow students in seventh grade and higher to return to in-person learning on Wednesday at those schools that have not yet opened this school year. 

Panama-Buena Vista Union School District has kept most of its reopening schedule the same, but it has pushed back the tentative date for bringing back its seventh grade students. If the county enters the red tier Tuesday, it plans to bring back its seventh graders for the first time on Wednesday, March 24, according to its most recent COVID-19 road map. This would mark the first time these students have been on their junior high campus.

The tentative date for eighth graders to arrive would remain the same: April 6. That is the Tuesday after students return from spring break. This week the district welcomed fourth through sixth grade students, which means that every grade has been welcomed back to in-person instruction on its elementary campuses.

The Kern High School District has also pushed back some of the dates for bringing students to its Regional Occupational Center and Career Technical Education Center. Originally, they were supposed to return March 15, but that has been postponed until Monday.

District spokeswoman Erin Briscoe said that many school sites may wait until Wednesday, March 24, when the county is in the red tier to welcome back ROC/CTEC students. In the purple tier, schools must adhere to small cohort guidelines and many career technical educational classes are larger.

KHSD is on track for bringing back any seniors who are interested in in-person instruction back on April 12. At Thursday night's board meeting, the district shared some statistics about what this would look like: It would entail bringing back 521 teachers at comprehensive high schools as well as 56 teachers at its alternative high schools.

That doesn't count all the certificated and classified support staff, such as nutrition workers, mental health clinicians, campus security and counselors.