“We need to be clear: this action – at whichever schools it occurs – is likely to significantly disrupt basic operation and instruction and will negatively impact the safety of students,” said the note, which was obtained by Doug Sovern of KCBS Radio.
READ MORE: California Senate Bill Proposes Clean Energy Solutions To Keep Lights On During OutagesDistrict officials said they did not know how many teachers would be involved or which schools would be impacted. The Oakland Education Association, which represents the teachers, has not sanctioned the potential sickout.
Correction: I’m told tomorrow’s potential sickout is *not* sanctioned by the @OaklandEA union. A group of teachers is planning it, according to OUSD, but it’s not organized by their union. https://t.co/epzXOnRAgu
— Doug Sovern (@SovernNation) January 6, 2022
The district also pushed back on claims that schools are unsafe during the omicron surge, noting that most people in the district are vaccinated, masks are required, HEPA air filters are in classrooms and regular testing is available.
Earlier this week, OUSD touted a mass COVID-19 testing effort involving the distribution of tens of thousands of home test kits along with the operation of test sites during the holidays. District officials said the effort helped identify nearly 1,000 cases among students, staff and community members before classes resumed on Monday.
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OUSD also criticized the timing of the action. “Moreover, an unexpected need to keep students home on Friday with little or no advanced notice is likely to force families to place their children in less safe environments. Most of our parents and guardians will need to continue to go to work on Friday even if their child’s teacher participates in this unauthorized work action,” the district went on to say.
The potential sickout in Oakland comes as some teachers in the San Francisco Unified School District threatened a sickout over COVID-19 safety measures on Thursday.
“You need to talk about the teachers. You need to act like you care about the teachers,” San Francisco Unified teacher Rori Abernethy, who organized the action, told KPIX 5.
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It was not immediately known how many SFUSD teachers participated.