Why are my children switching campuses in January?
A gas well in Aliso Canyon has been leaking for more than 70 days. Residents have reported fumes, and parents have said their children have developed headaches, nausea and nosebleeds. Over 2,800 families have worked with the utility behind the leak, Southern California Gas, to find new housing.
Where will the students be going?
How will they be getting there?
The district is offering more than 10 buses from Porter Ranch Community School and seven from Castlebay Lane to transport students to the new schools. Parents were required to fill out a transportation request form to make sure their child would have a seat.
Parents who have relocated outside the area don't have school bus options to get them to the pickup and drop-off points, but the gas company will pay for mileage reimbursement.
When do they start?
The first day back to school for students at these two schools will be Tuesday, Jan. 12.
How are the new campuses designed?
LAUSD spent the last three weeks building what are essentially annexes to the existing campuses. At Northridge, there is a separate entrance, and the school has its own basketball court. PRCS elementary school students will use the new portable buildings added for the relocation — which LAUSD calls “bungalows” — while middle school students will learn in empty classrooms in the main campus building.
This is what the temporary locations will look like:
What should students wear?
The same rules around clothing will continue, according to LAUSD. For example, students at Porter Ranch Community School should continue abiding by the guidelines the school has set, including no skirts or shorts above the knee.
Will their teachers be following them?
For the most part, yes. At least one science teacher at Porter Ranch Community was transferred because of health issues and won’t be continuing at the Northridge campus. Overall, staffing is expected to be “quite stable,” according to Vivian Ekchian, the LAUSD district superintendent responsible for Porter Ranch, though she declined to provide specific numbers.
How about school supplies?
LAUSD is striving for continuity in learning environments, so over the past few weeks, crews have been hauling desks, supplies, boxes and other tools from the old campuses to the new ones. The elementary classrooms in the Northridge campus, for example, have the same room numbers and the same furniture — down to the students' names taped onto their desks.
What about after-school programs?
L.A. Unified has made space available for existing after-school programs, Ekchian said. The programs will continue if the schools want them to — and there will be late buses for students who attend.
What if I have more questions?
Times staff writer Sonali Kohli contributed to this report.
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