Virtual education starts in East County

Photo by Tony Kukulich

First-grade student Lacey Musantry, left, arrives as teachers and administrators distribute school supplies to parents and students during a drive-thru event at Ron Nunn Elementary School in Brentwood, July 28. Last week was the start of the distance learning school year for Brentwood Union School District students.

Most school districts in East County returned to classes in full distance learning mode last week, and while the takeaway on how well it went was mixed, it leaned positive.

Brentwood Union School District (BUSD) started out the gate with distance learning and Zoom links, while Oakley Union Elementary School District (OUESD) soft-peddled into the arrangement with paper packets and plans to begin virtual lessons next week. The Liberty Union High School District won’t begin remote classes until Aug. 10 but recently held “drive-thru” registration, during which time students received material from their cars, getting out briefly to take yearbook photos. And while the Antioch Unified School District (AUSD) won’t begin classes until Sept. 1, the district announced Monday this week it will also commence lessons remotely — a change of pace from the plan the district proposed earlier in the year.

“While we had hoped to offer both an in-person hybrid learning program as well as a distance learning plan for students when school starts on Sept. 1, recent health indications — especially as they relate to Gov. (Gavin) Newsom’s guidance for schools — indicate that in-person learning will not be a possibility,” AUSD Superintendent Stephanie Anello wrote in an Aug. 3 letter.


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