Sonoma County Office of Education buys property for educator housing

California is in a housing crisis, and developers have pushed for legislation to boost construction.

The Sonoma County Office of Education has purchased a piece of property for educator housing at 3280 Juniper Ave. in Santa Rosa for $630,000.

Office of Education officials plan to ask the city to rezone the property to allow the construction of a high-density housing project that will include at least 60 rental units for teachers and other public employees.

The housing, known as Casitas de Amarosa, will be next to Amarosa Academy, an alternative education campus that serves about 45 students in seventh through 12th grades who have experienced challenges in traditional school settings, according to SCOE.

The project was initiated by Sonoma County Superintendent of Schools Steven D. Herrington, who is retiring in December. It was delayed because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Incoming  Superintendent Amie R. Carteris plans to prioritize building housing for educators as a way to make Sonoma County more affordable for prospective school employees.

“Building housing that school staff can afford is essential to our mission of serving students,” Carter said. “This housing will help us realize our goal of strengthening and diversifying our educational workforce.”

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