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Sacramento among 6 California school districts saying state budget cuts will delay reopening

"We cannot in good conscience risk the health and safety of our students and staff by returning to the classroom prematurely," a letter to state legislators reads.

SACRAMENTO, Calif — Six California school districts representing more than 900,000 students say the governor’s proposed budget cuts will delay the reopening of schools.

Los Angeles Unified officials joined five other urban districts in a Monday letter to legislators, saying they need more money to safely reopen schools. 

"Reopening our school campuses will require more — not fewer — resources to ensure and sustain proper implementation of public health guidance and the safety of all of those involved," the letter reads. "Cuts will mean that the reopening of schools will be delayed even after State guidance and clearance from public health officials is given."

The other districts are Sacramento, San Francisco, Oakland, San Diego and Long Beach. Gov. Gavin Newsom has proposed $14 billion in budget cuts because of the coronavirus. The superintendents said the idea of reopening schools in a pandemic with a decreased budget is not realistic.

"We cannot in good conscience risk the health and safety of our students and staff by returning to the classroom prematurely and without funding for the necessary precautions given the continued lack of national testing program and a lack of clear understanding of the impacts of coronavirus on young people," the three-page later states.

Just last week, Sacramento City Unified School District laid off 12 district employees as it continues to address a $27 million deficit. 

Newsom's office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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