Impacts to Our School Community

Dear community member,

Our hearts go out to all those in our local community and neighboring communities who have been impacted by this continuing series of storms.

Many in our school community have experienced and continue to experience disruption this week. Storm impacts, evacuations and flooding forced many school sites in our County to close on Monday. Those impacts continued to be felt throughout the week, particularly in Watsonville and San Lorenzo Valley. There is no doubt these have challenging conditions, and I am grateful for the adaptability displayed by our families and educators.

I want to extend our deep appreciation to the public safety partners and first responders who have gone above and beyond to keep our community safe. From the staff at the Santa Cruz County Emergency Operations Center to National Weather Service forecasters, the Sheriff’s Office and police, our fire departments, City governments and numerous nonprofits, so many have been working around the clock to assess and respond to these conditions.

We are all hopeful a sense of normalcy will return soon, though forecasts predict about a week of rains are left including potentially heavy storms over the weekend.

Our schools and offices will be closed Monday in recognition of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, and I’m looking forward to once again joining friends and community members at the annual march and rally in Santa Cruz on Monday morning. 

The words of Dr. King offer wisdom for the many hands working to transform our school community into an equitable and safe environment in which all learners can thrive. We know this work is not always easy. But as Dr. King reminds us, “Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle.”

Yours in education and equity,
Dr. Faris Sabbah
County Superintendent of Schools