School is a hot topic here in California just as it is across the country. One of the biggest questions is whether students will return to school or continue distance, i.e. virtual, learning. An issue that the state has needed to address is the fact that many children with special needs simply do not do well with the virtual learning platform. Instead, they need to be physically in classrooms in order to receive the one-on-one instruction they need.
Recently, the California State Board of Education and Gov. Newsom announced that all school districts will be able to provide in-classroom instruction for students with “acute” needs and disabilities as the school year begins. This will occur regardless of whether a particular county is being monitored due to its impact from current events. Naturally, this makes some teachers nervous since they do not want to be unnecessarily exposed to any illness, but the efforts to keep these children from getting any further behind appears to take precedence.
The student groups will be kept small and schools will receive guidance already in place for other facilities for children such as daycare centers. Safety remains a priority for everyone involved but requires a balance with the educational needs of children with special needs. More than likely, there will be some details to work out in order to make this arrangement work.
Parents of special needs children will most likely need to work closely with their school districts as this new policy is implemented. Every child deserves access to a quality education even in light of the current circumstances. Anyone needing assistance in navigating this new reality on behalf of his or her child may benefit from a consultation with an attorney experienced in special education law.