West Sacramento families, educators rally to reopen schools

Local News

WEST SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KTXL) — Students, parents and teachers stood side-by-side to rally for the reopening of in-person learning at their West Sacramento schools.

“It is important, and it is absolutely imperative that we get these kids back in in-person school,” said Tiffany McFadden, a mother of a River City High School student.

With West Sacramento now back in the red tier, the reopening of schools to its students isn’t happening fast enough for many parents and they want to know why.

“Our students of this district are struggling. They’re struggling emotionally, they’re struggling academically, their struggling physically. The only answer is to get them back in the classroom with the peers and the support that they need,” McFadden explained. 

Riverbank Elementary kindergarten teacher Kerry Koerwitz told FOX40 she’s been hoping to have students back in her classroom since August. 

“My little ones, this is their first experience with school. And to be doing that on a computer isn’t right. And they’re not getting the foundational skills that they need to be able to be successful for the rest of their education,” Koerwitz explained.

Giorgos Kazanis, the spokesperson for the Washington Unified School District, told FOX40 that reopening the district’s schools to students on campus is near.

“I feel like we’re on the goal line and ready to punch it in,” Kazanis said.

Despite all the planning and preparation in anticipation for the reopening, Kazanis said there’s still talks that need to take place.

“They take a lot of conversation from the backend, especially with our teachers union, our classified employees union, making sure everyone is on the same page,” Kazanis said. “Once they’re vaccinated, they’ll be fine. They’re not worried. There’s some of us that aren’t going to be vaccinated. And they’re okay going back.” 

Kazanis said by the end of next week the district should have the date when preschool through third graders will be able to return to school.

They plan for other grades to follow after that, although there are no specific dates yet.

Kazanis said special day class students already returned to school on February 17.

“It’s about taking methodical steps that can ensure the safety in public health guidelines for everyone,” Kazanis said. 

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