Anderson Union High School District switches to distance learning because of unhealthy air quality

Because of all the smoke hanging around Shasta County, the Anderson Union High School District switched back to distance learning for Friday.

Posted: Sep 11, 2020 5:39 PM
Updated: Sep 11, 2020 6:04 PM

ANDERSON, Calif. – Because of all the smoke hanging around Shasta County, the Anderson Union High School District switched back to distance learning for Friday.

“Unfortunately this year, we've had record-breaking fires and a number of acreages have been burned,” said Victor Hopper, the superintendent for the Anderson Union High School District.

It is the smoke from those burned acres that’s forced Anderson High students to go back to distance learning.

“We want to make sure that we can keep in the forefront the safety of our students and staff,” said Hopper. “We want to mitigate the interruptions and do it in a safe environment.”

West Valley High School was the first school to make the switch. But as the air got worse, the district decided to switch all schools back to distance learning.

“The air quality started getting worse for the other sites,” said Hopper. “At about 12 o'clock we made the determination we were going to suspend the other school sites.”

The Anderson Union High School District says it hopes to return to in-person classes on Monday. The school district says it will be monitoring the air quality in Shasta County throughout the weekend.

Parents tell Action News Now while the sudden switchback is disruptive, their health is more important.

“I think it's a good thing,” said Michelle Shriver. “The particles and things that are floating in the air can be really damaging to your health and your lungs.”

Teachers continue to adapt to the changes and roll with the punches.

“We want kids on campus and we know that's the better place to learn,” said Jeff Osborn, a teacher at Anderson Union High School.

“But in the event, they can't come here they can still learn remotely.”

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