The San Ramon Valley Unified School District is one of the many agencies across northern California that may be affected by the planned PG&E power shut-off predicted to begin late Tuesday night or early Wednesday morning, and school district officials want residents to know that all schools will remain open on Wednesday (Oct. 9).
While all SRVUSD schools will remain open district staff are working to make the school day run as smoothly as possible and want residents to know they will treat the blackouts in a similar way to last year’s wildfires and communicate with an update for staff and parents each day by 2 p.m.
“Red Flag warnings and high winds are being forecast for much of Northern California on Wednesday and Thursday of this week and PG&E has indicated that a power shutoff could impact approximately 600,000 customers in Northern California,” SRVUSD officials said in a statement.
SRVUSD administrators are planning for various issues that may arise from the blackouts and want residents to know that contingency plans are being put in place.
“We understand that the absence of power can be an inconvenience for our staff, students and families and we appreciate your patience during this time. We are doing everything we can, as a district, to make sure that a shut-off has the least impact possible on our schools,” they added. “We will prioritize student safety and be creative in ensuring that student learning continues.”
For one, students who purchased school lunches will be provided with options that do not require refrigeration or cooking. Also, to help ensure that school sites can still communicate with one another, administrators at all sites have been equipped with radios and analog phones that can be used for emergency purposes.
It’s not all bad news, however, as district officials say there are some factors that are working in their favor.
The weather for the remainder of the week is expected to cool down making classrooms more comfortable, and elementary and middle schools are on conference this week, meaning they will be dismissed by noon each day. Gas will also remain on, meaning that schools will still have access to warm water.
According to school district officials, based on the most current information provided by PG&E, the following sites may be impacted:
*Bollinger Canyon Elementary
*Golden View Elementary
*Twin Creeks Elementary
Based on PG&E's maps, the following sites may also be impacted:
*California High School
*Coyote Creek Elementary
*Diablo Vista Middle School
*Iron Horse Middle School
*Montevideo Elementary School
*Neil Armstrong Elementary School
*Pine Valley Middle School
*Walt Disney Elementary School
*SRVUSD Service Center
“Please keep in mind that this information is fluid based on changing weather conditions. PG&E is making the decisions for its customers. Though not all sites are predicted to be affected, all sites are preparing, just in case they are unexpectedly part of the shut-down,” school officials said.
District officials added that they will be putting out updates on the district's Facebook (facebook.com/srvusd) and Twitter accounts (@SRVUSD1), and any additional questions can be directed via email to email@example.com.
On Tuesday, PG&E’s main website was down following announcement of the shutoffs, which was heavily criticized by users. As of press time, the site (http://www.pge.com/pspsupdates) was still unavailable but PG&E continues to post updates on their Twitter account @PGE4Me. A Twitter account is not needed to view their messages.
PG&E also has two other websites with limited information available about the power shutoffs: www.pgecurrents.com and www.pgealerts.com.