OUSD board to discuss return-to-campus plans Nov. 18; changes public-comment rules

11 16 23 OUsdReturn-to-campus plans are on the Ojai Unified School District's meeting agenda on Wednesday, Nov. 18, starting at 5:30 p.m. The meeting will be held via teleconference.

The board will also hear a presentation on the school district's Chaparral High School educational program, among several agenda items.

The agenda can be viewed at:

The public can watch the meeting via district YoutubeVideo at  or    

watch it via district Facebook:

The school district is changing from its previous meetings how it will receive public comment.


New is that public comments may be made in written format  and limited to 450 words, if they are submitted prior to 4 p.m. the day of the meeting.

Also, now, if members of the public wish to make a comment after the 4 p.m. deadline the day of the meeting, including during the meeting, they can make it live from the OUSD board room at 414 E. Ojai Ave., Ojai. The agenda states that members of the board and district staff will be attending via teleconference. It was not stated who would be in the board room to accommodate the public's in-person comments.

(This article has been corrected in the second reference that if members of the public wish to make a comment after 4 p.m. the day of the meeting, including during the meeting, they can make it in person.) 

OUSD has stated that due to COVID-19 safety protocols, the number of individuals in the Board Room will be limited (a number is not given) and masks will be required at all times.

The board regularly has staff and members of the public participate in meetings via teleconference for presentation items, but does not provide that option for public comments.

The public may make public comments the day of the meeting — before 4 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 18 — at:

In previous meetings, public comments were received prior to and during the meeting and there was not an option to make in-person comments during the meeting in the board room.

At the Oct. 14 meeting, OUSD Trustee Jane Weil expressed concern about public comments at the 1:21 time stamp of the Oct. 14 school board meeting,

She said: "Before we get started, can I just point out as a board member, with the public comments lately, I feel like there's been a lot of questions that actually should be directed to the principals of each school, rather than to the board, and then come to the board when those questions aren’t answered? So I’m just pointing that that’s my experience as a board member. There's a lot of questions that I feel like aren’t,  you know, I don’t know how to say that, but there are so many questions, and you want to specifically answer them. I feel at a loss because I can’t answer them. And I’m not sure that a board meeting is the proper place to answer them. So that’s my experience."

All documents provided within 72 hours before the meeting to members of the board concerning open session items addressed in this meeting may be viewed by the public at the Superintendent’s office at the Ojai Unified School District, 414 East Ojai Ave. People can also subscribe to the OUSD agenda mailing list by contacting Kathy Smith at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


As COVID-19 cases continue to rise, Ventura County will be as of Tuesday, Nov. 17, in the more-restrictive purple tier on the state’s watch list.
That would mean that school districts that have not yet reopened for in-person classes would be unable to do so until the county moves again into the less-restrictive red tier and stays there for 14 days.
Ojai Unified School District is allowed to continue in-person classes since it welcomed elementary school students back to campuses on Nov. 2, according to school district and county Public Health officials.
To view the previous Ojai Valley News article on what Ventura County reverting to the purple tier means for school districts, visit:
For more information about schools reopening, visit the Ventura County Public Health schools site at: 





Not a subscriber?  choose your subscription plan.