Local School Boards Have a Lot of Power. Will the Pandemic Change That?

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San Francisco Unified School District families and educators march from Alamo Square to City Hall in San Francisco on March 13, 2021, in support of opening schools on the one year anniversary of school buildings being closed. (Beth LaBerge/KQED)

School boards in California have historically had a lot of power over decisions at the local level, but the choice to reopen for in-person learning has put that power to the test like never before.

More than a thousand California school districts are deciding whether to take advantage of financial incentives and reopen classrooms for the youngest and most vulnerable students. Many are facing intense pressure from lawmakers who question the power local school boards have, and from parents who are leading recall efforts.

Guest: Guy Marzorati, KQED politics reporter and producer for the Political Breakdown podcast

Episode transcript here