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Teachers suing School District of Palm Beach County, call for school board members to resign or transition to remote learning

Plaintiffs want everyone on campus to be tested for COVID-19
Posted at 10:44 AM, Sep 27, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-27 13:03:37-04

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — A group of Palm Beach County teachers are suing the school district over what they say is an unsafe reopening.

It's a decision that could potentially force schools to transition back to remote learning as early as next week.

"Many of us teachers had requested right from the beginning to be placed on remote learning," plaintiff and high school math coach Steven Silberberg said.

Silberberg said he has been using sick days in order to stay home to and teach remotely until he hopes a ruling is made ordering schools to return to distance learning.

"(It's) completely reckless and insensitive to the health and well-being of, not only the students, but the teachers," Silberberg said.

Silberberg said he and 2,000 other Palm Beach County teachers were promised remote learning accommodations by the district's human resources department.

However, he said just before the school year began, principals across the county denied majority of the requests and told teachers no remote learning positions were available.

Silberberg and several other teachers are now calling for school board members to resign.

"I think there still is a lot of anxiety," Superintendent Dr. Donald Fennoy said. "We're going to be shuffling things around. A lot of people that work in these buildings are in support roles and have teaching certifications that are helping cover classes."

Silberberg said if the lawsuit fails, he at least hopes the school district will require all current and future brick and mortar students and employees to get tested for COVID-19.

"What price can you put on a human life, whether its $20, $30?" Silberberg said. "We need to do those tests first before we allow students and employees back into the schools."

Through the first week of school, there have been 16 positive coronavirus cases, according to the school district.

All 16 cases are from different campuses.

That number includes 13 employees and 3 students.