Oakland parents, school board members to brainstorm reopening schools

As California's stay at home order lifted last week, Bay Area school systems continue to discuss how to reopen public schools.

The Oakland Unfied School District does not have a timeline for when to resume brick and mortar instruction.

"Frankly, we don't really know," said spokesperson John Sasaki.

In the meantime, the district is putting together "listening sessions" between board memebers and parents.

"It's really about letting everyone know where we are as a district and how soon we could open with how things are in place."

Updates also come to the district's Facebook page, as the distribution of vaccines continues to inspire confidence.

In a video, the OUSD shows what changes they've made and will continue to make to ensure students are safe in the classroom. Among the common changes like mandatory face coverings and symptom screenings, the OUSD says they've improved cleaning and enhances air ventiliation to help prevent the spread. 

"We have hundreds of thousands of gallons of hand sanitizer. We have half a million masks in our warehouse ready to go," said Sasaki. "We have palettes and palettes of paper towels and disinfectant spray and gloves, and all the things you need for these circumstances."

While it's unclear when exactly Oakland will reopen public schools, Sasaki says it likely wouldn't happen until Alameda County enters the Orange tier.

District board members are leading the listening sessions with parents. They will be held this week on Monday and Tuesday evening from 5:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. You can watch and participate by logging onto https://www.ousd.org/reopening2021infosessions.