SEIU 1021

Governor Newsom Signs Executive Order Ensuring State Funding for Schools Even in Event of Physical Closure


The order mandates that school districts use dollars to fund distance learning and high quality educational opportunities, safely provide school meals, and arrange for the supervision of students during school hours

The order requires Department of Education and California Health & Human Services Agency to develop strategies to address equity challenges around internet connectivity, ensure students with disabilities receive specialized education, and safely provide meals

Order urges employers to take area school closures into account and provide flexibility during the COVID-19 crisis

SACRAMENTO – Governor Gavin Newsom today issued an executive order ensuring California public school districts retain state funding even in the event of physical closure. The order directs school districts to use those state dollars to fund distance learning and high quality educational opportunities, provide school meals and, as practicable, arrange for the supervision for students during school hours.

“Closing schools has a massive, cascading effect for our kids and their families – especially those least equipped financially to deal with them. The needs of California kids must be met regardless of whether their school is open or closed. School districts that choose to close must use state educational dollars to quickly meet the needs of children and families. The State of California is working around the clock to help those districts and provide best practices to ensure no kid is left behind,” said Governor Newsom.

“I applaud Governor Newsom for the action in his Executive Order to provide schools with the tools they need to continue providing students with high quality education while keeping them safe. This allows schools to put safety first without jeopardizing the financial resources needed to meet the needs of our students. The California Department of Education looks forward to working closely with Governor Newsom and educators from across the state to provide guidance for addressing critical education issues such as providing students with meals and insuring the delivery of needed services and supports to students with disabilities,” said California State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond.

The order provides that even if schools close temporarily because of COVID-19, school districts must:

  • Continue delivering high-quality educational opportunities to students through other options, distance learning and independent study;
  • Safely provide school meals through the Summer Food Service Program and Seamless Summer Option, consistent with the requirements of the California Department of Education and U.S. Department of Agriculture;
  • To the extent practicable, arrange for supervision for students during ordinary school hours
  • Continue to pay employees.