SD Judge rules in favor of North County parents, blocks State’s school reopening rules

Written by Destiny Garcia

Upset parents from North County filed a lawsuit against state leaders regarding the framework for school reopening, and this week, San Diego County Judge Cynthia Freeland granted a restraining order against the state of California from enforcing regulations on schools that have plans to reopen.

Those who filed the lawsuit claimed the regulations were unfairly preventing schools from reopening and that children are suffering because of school closures.  They also said the regulations would limit the number of students that can return to schools that could adhere to the strict guidelines.  For example, middle and high schools tend to have more students and the four-foot distance rule mandated by the state would significantly reduce the capacity of classrooms.

The judge also overturned the denial to reopen issued by the state for Poway Unified, San Dieguito Union High and Carlsbad Unified.

Another argument made by many in San Diego County is that the quality of learning is varying greatly which is not fair to those who have had to stay at home and learn remotely. Attorney and Co-director of the Parent Association in Carlsbad, Scott Davidson said “…a huge validation of our position that remote learning is a failure, that education is a constitutional right and that these kids have been denied their right to an education with remote learning.”.

“With the mental health effects resulting from (or being exacerbated by) remote learning, one can conclude that disparate treatment being experienced by children affected by the January 2021 Framework is depriving those same children of a fundamental benefit of education,” Freeland said in the restraining order.

The lawsuit also requires that school districts appear in court on March 30 to prove why they are not able to open up at the soonest time possible and what restricts them from doing so.

The courageous parents who have stood up against the State have the approval and support of many San Diegan’s including school districts such as Carlsbad Unified, Poway Unified, San Dieguito High School Unified and San Marcos Unified.

Photo via Brian Krista/Baltimore Sun Media Group