As we face the many challenges of this fire, there is community concern whether or not schools will be opening on time and if not, when they will open; as families are eager to have a sense of safety and normalcy restored by having their children return to daily routines. Each District is working diligently in their quest to open on time. As the first day of school nears, there are numerous reasons that schools may remain closed for the time being.
There are 26 independently operated school districts in Shasta County. The decision to close schools must be made by each school superintendent, based on their specific circumstances. Those decisions are then shared with the County Office of Education, which communicates the information to the public. Any changes to the scheduled first day of school will be announced by your local district, media, and on this page once the information is made available.
The following are some of the many variables that must be considered when opening schools.
- In many areas, the threat of new fires remains strong
- Air quality: Areas with extremely bad air quality require school closure
- Smoke damage: Schools are still assessing smoke damage to their facilities
- Transportation: Transportation to schools is a challenge in many areas due to limited visibility from smoke; road closures; and evacuations
- Because of the extreme amount of smoke, ash, and tar, schools will need to go through an intensive process of inspecting playgrounds and blacktop and addressing health concerns before school resumes
- Staffing shortages: Many school staff have been personally impacted by the fires and may not be able to get to school to serve students
- The continued possibility of power outages remains a concern
- Some schools are acting as emergency shelters for the community