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Stronger Together: Timeline

Part of Stronger Together: A Guidebook for the Safe Reopening of California's Public Schools. Created through the Reopening Schools Task Force that fostered a collaborative process for educators and stakeholders to lend their important voices.

Timeline of CDE COVID-19 Response and Activities

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This is a brief overview of key dates and the response efforts of the California Department of Education (CDE).

March 2020

  • 13th - Governor Gavin Newsom issues Executive Order N-26-20, ensuring state funding for schools even in event of physical closure.
  • 17th - In coordination with the Department of Health and Human Services, CDE releases guidance on distance learning, child nutrition, and child care.
  • 18th - Governor Newsom issues Executive Order N-30-20, suspending standardized testing for local educational agencies to take appropriate actions to mitigate the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic while California pursued a federal waiver of testing requirements.
  • 19th - Governor Newsom issues a stay at home order for the entire state.
  • 20th - CDE releases special education guidance to support students with disabilities.
  • 26th - The US Department of Education issues informal approval of Assessment Waiver; joint request from CDE and the California State Board of Education.
  • 31st - State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond releases a recommendation letter to all schools in the state to consider closing physical campuses to ensure the safety of students and staff through the end of the 2019–20 school year.

April 2020

  • 1st - CDE releases guidance on graduation and grading requirements.
  • 1st - CDE releases Labor Management Framework established by the Labor Management Task Force facilitate by SSPI Thurmond.
  • 1st - Superintendent Thurmond announces Senate Bill (SB) 117 funding is available to school districts.
  • 2nd - The California State Board of Education, CDE, California State University, University of California, California Community Colleges, and the Association of Independent California Colleges and Universities issue a joint statement to waive entrance requirements for college-bound seniors and juniors.
  • 4th - Governor Newsom issues Executive Order N-45-20 for child care.
  • 4th - CDE partners with the Californians Dedicated to Education Foundation (CDE Foundation), to create the California Bridging the Digital Divide Fund to provide technology supports to students without devices and internet connectivity.
  • 7th - Governor Newsom issues Executive Order N-47-20 for child care.
  • 8th - CDE releases guidance on child care.
  • 9th - Superintendent Thurmond establishes ad hoc committees to meet the most urgent needs for students: loss of learning, closing the achievement gap, supply, and distance learning.
  • 9th - SSPI creates "Closing the Digital Divide" task force to provide students with technology to support distance learning and move towards closing the digital divide. As a result, Internet Service Providers guaranteed free and low-cost internet to students who did not previously have access to it.
  • 27th - Superintendent Thurmond establishes a series of support circles to provide resources and comfort to educators, parents, and students.
  • 29th - Superintendent Thurmond establishes a reopening schools task force comprised of educational partners, labor and union leaders, legislative partners, and educators to drive the conversation that led to the development of this guidance document.

To date, CDE Nutrition Services has received and approved more than 5,000 emergency meal waivers to continue providing meals to students and their families even though schools have physically closed. In addition to this work, since mid-March, CDE has created, planned, and hosted more than 30 webinars focusing on the following subject matter areas: distance learning, special education, mental health, English learners, deaf and blind student and educator supports, nutrition services, federal funding supports, child care, and career technical education.

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Questions:   California Department of Education |
Last Reviewed: Monday, December 6, 2021
Related Content
  • Coronavirus Response and School Reopening Guidance
    Information and resources regarding CDE's COVID-19 response efforts, including the guidance document for safely reopening schools.
  • Stronger Together
    A Guidebook for the Safe Reopening of California's Public Schools. Created through the Reopening Schools Task Force that fostered a collaborative process for educators and stakeholders to lend their important voices.
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