Voice of OC | Orange County Board of Education Considers Suing the State Over School Shutdown

Members of the Orange County Board of Education are expected to discuss suing the state over the mandatory school shutdown at their meeting this Tuesday night. 

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Earlier this month, Gov. Gavin Newsom announced that any counties on the state coronavirus watch list, which includes Orange County, would not be allowed to have in-person classes. 

Board of Education Meeting

When: 6 p.m. Tuesday, July 28

Where: Onsite meeting with limited public seating, 200 Kalmus Drive Costa Mesa CA 92880 and available via video online at Zoom or by audio only 1-669-900-6833, ID: 84141572927

Agenda: July 28 Meeting

Public Participation: An in-person public comment session of 30 minutes with an additional 15 minutes after closed session. Comments can also be submitted by emailing ocbe@ocde.us but the agenda states comments submitted electronically will be subject to the same public comment time limit and will be entered into the meeting transcript.

According to the agenda for the board’s upcoming meeting, members will be discussing potential litigation “regarding state orders and restrictions against reopening schools.” 

The item is listed for closed session discussion, meaning it won’t be publicly discussed because it is a legal matter. If the board decides to sue, or take any other action, it would be required to be announced at the end of the meeting. 

The county board of education does not have the power to return students to classrooms, and that decision can only be made by the 27 individual school districts. 

The board came under national scrutiny earlier this month after members approved a report calling for students to return to classes without masks or social distancing. 

The guidelines also ran in direct opposition to the county’s own department of education, who released suggestions that encouraged the widespread use of masks and social distancing when children returned to school. 

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