Most LBUSD high schoolers opt to stay home when campuses reopen; middle schoolers are split

As the Long Beach Unified School District prepares to open elementary school campuses on Monday, the district has also completed the process of surveying parents of middle school and high school students to see who will return to in-person instruction next month.

According to the survey, the majority of Long Beach’s students will continue to learn from home, with only 7,635 (36.5%) of the LBUSD’s 20,904 9-12th grade students returning to in-person learning. In middle school, 7,542 students (50.4%) out of 14,948 total 6-8th graders are returning to campus.

High school seniors can return to LBUSD schools on April 19, with other high schoolers back on campus on April 26. Middle school students can return beginning April 20. Both levels have been cleared to return already by Los Angeles County as well as the Long Beach Health Department. And St. Anthony High’s students returned to in-person instruction this week.

The LBUSD will continue to offer distance learning options for families who choose to keep their students home for the rest of the school year, and the district previously said that it was a pretty even split among elementary school families, with 44% choosing to return to limited in-person instruction.

Planning for the future, the LBUSD confirmed that the recent health guideline updates allowing for 3 feet of space between desks (as opposed to 6 feet) will not affect plans for the 2020-21 school year. It does, however, allow them to plan with confidence for a full, all-day reopening in the 2021-22 school year.

“With the new spacing guidelines in place, we look forward to having all students who want to return to in-person instruction for full-day programs,” LBUSD Superintendent Jill Baker said in a video message this week.

The number of students returning at each high school campus. Courtesy the LBUSD.

The number of students returning at each middle school campus. Courtesy the LBUSD.

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