Orange County Superintendent Dr. Al Mijares issued the following statement Wednesday in response to the OC Board of Education’s July 28 announcement of a planned lawsuit against California’s governor and public health officer:
On the heels of recommending students return to school without face coverings or social distancing, a majority of the five-member OC Board of Education has decided to file a lawsuit against the state public health officer and Governor Gavin Newsom over California’s school reopening plans.
I am disappointed by this latest legal action, but not surprised. This lawsuit continues the pattern of a highly litigious board majority that seems to have no qualms about diverting time, energy and financial resources from students and programs to satisfy their own ideological interests.
Remember that locally elected school boards and superintendents will continue to approve and implement their own plans based on the guidance of state and local public health agencies and the needs of their communities. The Orange County Department of Education is working to support them every step of the way, and I am optimistic that we can unite as a county to return our students to safe and equitable learning environments.
OCDE and Orange County Superintendent Dr. Al Mijares have worked with local school district leaders to develop “Orange County Together: A guide to safely reopening schools in the COVID-19 era.” This resource, available on our website, is in alignment with the California Department of Public Health, which stresses the need for social distancing and face coverings when in-person instruction resumes.