On Tuesday, July 14, the Monrovia Unified School District Board of Education convened a special meeting to discuss current conditions and to provide staff with clear direction in the time before the start of school. This meeting was held before the governor announced his plan for schools on Friday. Under the governor’s plan, schools located in counties that are on the Monitoring List must not physically open for in-person instruction until their county has come off the Monitoring List for 14 consecutive days — Los Angeles County is currently on that list.
The spike of COVID-19 cases in Los Angeles County correlated positively with the steady increase in the number of parents opting for distance learning in the most recent survey of Monrovia’s parents. The district had begun formulating plans for a modified in-person instructional model that would reduce the number of students in class by half and added safety measures to mitigate risk. The surge in COVID-19 cases, combined with parent preference, caused the Board to reconsider bringing students back and led to the difficult decision to focus solely on one model: 100% distance learning.
The Board expressed their commitment to better meet the needs of students by targeting staff resources in the following areas:
- Ensure accountability through meaningful grades, attendance, and daily student schedule.
- Ensure high-quality, rigorous instruction aligned to grade level standards.
- Provide academic and socio-emotional support.
- Provide additional support for language acquisition, including dual immersion programs.
- Provide daily, live interaction with teachers for instruction, progress monitoring, and maintaining school connectedness, as feasible.
- Identify childcare options.
- Provide a continuity of services to students with special needs, foster youth, and homeless youth.
- Provide regular communication with parents and guardians.
Regular updates regarding the progress of sub-committees working on each of the aforementioned areas will be provided to the Board and parents. The Board will continue its monitoring of local conditions with the hope that schools may once again welcome their students safely in person.