July 16, 2020
Dear Superintendents and School Leaders,

I'm writing to share updates on a number of COVID-19-related items.

New State Guidance Expected Tomorrow
Gov. Gavin Newsom will announce COVID-19 guidance for schools and provide an update on the state’s response to the pandemic at a press conference tomorrow at noon. The update will be streamed at the @CAgovernor Twitter page and California Governor Facebook page.

Expanded Reopening Plan Template
As you know, the County of San Diego public health order dictates that “Each school shall complete and post a document detailing the actions the school is taking to comply with the [California Department of Public Health] Industry Guidance measures after considering the [California Department of Education] Guidelines [for reopening].” SDCOE worked with public health, with input from several superintendents, to create a template school reopening plan that meets the requirement outlined in the order.

The team has created an expanded safe reopening template as a supplement to the reopening plan. This new resource offers a scaffold to make sure your plan addresses the various considerations to reopen campuses.

If you have questions about either of these documents, please contact Bob Mueller at bmueller@sdcoe.net.

Updated Guidance on Face Shields
The California Department of Public Health guidance on face coverings includes the following note on face shields:

"Persons exempted from wearing a face covering due to a medical condition who are employed in a job involving regular contact with others should wear a non-restrictive alternative, such as a face shield with a drape on the bottom edge, as long as their condition permits it."

The County of San Diego is interpreting this to mean that when a face shield is worn in place of a face covering, it should include a drape at the bottom. We have updated our guidance on personal protective equipment accordingly.

COVID-19 Training for Employees
To ensure employees stay safe and healthy as we work toward reopening our worksites and schools, SDCOE is requiring our employees to take two short trainings about COVID-19 and the steps we are all expected to take to help keep each other safe.

The first includes details of SDCOE’s procedures regarding face coverings, cleaning, symptom screening, using shared spaces, and how to get additional information. The second covers basic guidelines for hand-washing, cleaning your personal office space, and wearing face coverings.

Feel free to download the PowerPoint presentations linked above as a foundation for training specific to your district employees.

Thank you for all you are doing to support our region’s children during these unprecedented times. As always, please don't hesitate to get in touch if I can be of assistance.


Dr. Paul Gothold
San Diego County Superintendent of Schools
phone: 858-292-3514