Parents Help Due to Staff Shortage at Greene Middle School, Palo Alto Unified School District Amid Omni-Micron Wave

PALO ALTO, Calif. (KGO) — Palo Alto’s parents are helping to help struggling school districts amid a staff shortage.

“I have an environmental engineering degree from MIT,” said Kaitlyn Liao, a parent who volunteers at Greene Middle School.

But this week, she’s helping conduct COVID testing and working in the library to keep the school open.

RELATED: Palo Alto Unified Asks Parents to Fill Support Staff Positions Stretched Thin During the Pandemic

“Because of ommicron and all the increasing cases we are seeing, there is an urgent need for bodies at the school,” Liao said. “Fortunately, this community is fortunate that parents are super passionate about keeping schools open and that’s why we’re here to keep schools open.”

Palo Alto has some of the most qualified volunteers you can find.

“We had a story about a Gunn High School professor of engineering from the parents at Stanford who offered to get a degree and teach everything from helping clean classrooms to supervising to answering questions. phones and even teaching classes. I think the parents were great,” said Sebastian Benavidez, Greene high school principal.

RELATED: Governor Newsom executive order helps keep Bay Area schools open for personalized learning

Many of the jobs on campus are certified, such as food processing. But two of the food workers at this school are currently ill, so parents will do the dodgy work of working at the food window or overseeing the lunch tables.

“Parents are super happy about it. Those who had lunch supervision yesterday were so happy to see how much energy all these kids have,” said Chris Hurtt, parent volunteer.

RELATED: Superintendent, district staff filling in as deputies amid Bay Area teacher shortage

They called for help on Sunday and said they would respond immediately.

“When that call came out — and I received the dashboard, 105 of our 800 parents volunteered. I just think that’s absolutely wonderful,” said Director Benavidez.

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Parents Help Due to Staff Shortage at Greene Middle School, Palo Alto Unified School District Amid Omni-Micron Wave 2

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