East Bay school district taking teachers out of classroom, assigning them to online learning again

The Mount Diablo Unified School District is having to take some teachers out of the classroom, and assign them to online learning again. 

The district says it's because more parents have pulled their kids out of the classroom.

Teachers and parents here were notified about some of the district changes Thursday night and they are very upset.

Before the start of the school day on Friday, all 22 teachers at Walnut Acres, stood in solidarity to express their disappointment and frustration.

At least 12 teachers, districtwide, will be reassigned to teach online, instead of in the classroom.

The change, goes into effect on Tuesday. 

But that means other teachers will also be affected since they will have to teach combined classes.

Why is this happening? 

The district says this is because of a spike in families pulling their kids out of class - and enrolling in the district's virtual learning independent study program.

At the start of the school year, 150 kids were enrolled in independent study. But as fears about the delta variant have grown, there are now 500 students enrolled.

The district says reassigning, is a question of finances. They don't have the money to hire extra teachers for both online and in-person.

Parents were also not happy about the decision.

"When it comes down to dollars and sense on paper, the board is making the decision they think is the best one," said parent Ryley Katz. "But it's not at the heart of what's best for the teachers and students who've been in the ringer for the last 18 months. This is the year to let it be. Children need normalcy."

Katz has a 1st, 3rd and 5th grader at the school. She says there will be a  "high likelihood my kids will be affected" by the re-shuffling of classes.

In a statement to KTVU, the superintendent said: " I completely understand the frustration, concerns and disappointment that families and teachers are feeling as these shifts take place and I am truly sorry this is so upsetting."

The district said that some classes will have to be combined, even across grade levels. 

Editor's note: An earlier version of this story mistakenly identified a parent as the head of the Parent Faculty Club. A correction has been made.