CFT responds to updated CDPH and CDC distancing guidelines

News Release

California Federation of Teachers
For Immediate Release
Contact: Matthew Hardy, 510-703-5291

SACRAMENTO, CA — CFT President Jeff Freitas issued the following statement following the announcements from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the California Department of Public Health altering physical distancing guidelines for school classrooms:

“Educators and staff share the goal of a safe return to in person instruction and have been proposing safe reopening guidelines since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. We know our students learn best in physical classrooms and want nothing more than to be reunited in a manner that keeps our educators, students, and communities safe.

“The latest guidance from the CDC and CDPH comes after months of planning at the local level for a safe return to in person learning. Districts created plans that include the previous CDC and CDPH recommended 6 feet of distancing along with testing, masking, and ventilation to create safe learning environments.

“We are concerned that our schools lack the time needed to now update other mitigation measures, including adjusting ventilation based on an increased number of students in classrooms. We are especially concerned about how the new guidance will impact California’s middle and high schools, especially in urban school districts.

“CFT will continue to advocate for 6 feet of distancing at the local level, because we know it adds to the safety of the classroom environment, we know our educators and students need stability, and we know that it helps keep class sizes smaller to strengthen the connections  between the educators and students in the classroom, especially during these times.”


The California Federation of Teachers represents 120,000 teachers, faculty, and school employees in public and private schools and colleges, from early childhood through higher education. It is the statewide affiliate of the AFT. More information at