LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — The first day of school is just a few weeks away, and students will be back in their classrooms for a full day of learning.
However, since COVID-19 continues to surge and children under the age of 12 remain ineligible for vaccinations, Los Angeles Unified School District officials want parents to be prepared for the changes they will see this coming school year.READ MORE: Vigil Held For 18-Year-Old Rylee Goodrich, 1 Of 2 Teen Victims Shot And Killed In Corona Movie Theater
“My kids can’t wait to go back to school,” father Juan Garcia said.
Full-time, in-person learning is returning to Los Angeles-area schools, along with recess, lunch on campus, after-school programs, athletics and other extracurricular activities. But, because so many children are unvaccinated, masks will still be required when inside classrooms or other school buildings – regardless of vaccination status. Garcia is happy to hear full-time school days are returning, but more ambivalent about the ongoing mask requirement, since his 17-year-old and 12-year-old are both vaccinated.
“I feel a little safer, but she’s still wearing a mask,” he said.READ MORE: More Businesses Like The Abbey in WeHo Setting Own Vaccine Requirements For Customers
But one small thing that vaccinated student can bypass is regular COVID-19 testing. The LAUSD’s medical director says fully-vaccinated students and staff will not be required to submit to regular testing. The initial testing will begin within two weeks of the first day of school, which is on Aug. 16 for LAUSD schools.
But despite the precautions, some parents are feeling more apprehension than usual as the school year approaches. One mom, who did not identify herself, says her oldest child is vaccinated, but would feel better if her 8-year-old could also get the vaccine.
“I am worried for her to go back to school,” she said. “I am just taking my precautions with her.”MORE NEWS: 17-Year Old Girl Violently Assaulted While Jogging In Culver City
The district’s online guidebook with information about their COVID policies and what families can expect this fall is available here. The district is also encouraging parents to get their eligible students vaccinated at any of the county’s vaccine sites, which are listed on this map.