The Santa Ana Unified School District (SAUSD) is shutting its schools until at least Jan. 11, 2021, “out of an abundance of caution,” says its superintendent.
“I encourage everyone to remain extremely vigilant and take all necessary precautions as we continue to navigate through one of the most dangerous periods of this pandemic,” Superintendent Jerry Almendarez said in a letter posted to the district website. District classrooms closed Dec. 8.
Southern California entered a regional stay-at-home order after its hospitals dropped below 15 percent available capacity for intensive care unit (ICU) beds. Orange County is among 11 counties that fall under the state-mandated Southern California region.
Schools that have already begun in-person learning aren’t required to close, but the SAUSD made the call to suspend in-person lessons and other activities. In Orange County, 1,964 people tested positive for COVID-19 on Dec. 7; to date, 1,633 residents have died from the virus.
Students who had been attending in-person classes will now learn remotely. Meal distribution services will continue, the district said.