ALL INFORMATION IS SUBJECT TO CHANGE PENDING
LOCAL, STATE & FEDERAL AUTHORITIES

This is not a decision that was made by the TISD Board of Trustees or district administration. On Tuesday, July 7, 2020, the Texas Education Agency (TEA) announced comprehensive guidelines for the 2020-21 school year and published the SY 20-21 Public Health Guidance document. The TEA guidelines contain a number of requirements. Three requirements are worth noting.

First, Texas public school districts must open their school buildings this fall for on-campus instruction. Second, we are required to offer a full day, five day week traditional school day option. Third, we may not limit the number of students who choose to attend in-person. Local school boards and superintendents may not choose, independently or locally, to open with a 100% remote-learning-only option for students. As a result, TISD has determined that two options will be available to students this next year: on-campus learning (full day, five days a week), and at-home remote learning. Another consideration was to offer a third option that included some type of alternating day or week option. However, the TEA guidelines provide for a possible loss of funding for school districts that do not provide on-campus instruction every day or if students must be on a part-time schedule to limit the number of students in a classroom at one time. In addition, this option was less favorable for much of our staff and our community as it posed additional challenges for scheduling, childcare, etc.

We are in the process of considering many different safeguards and precautions to mitigate the spread of illness within our schools. TISD will follow the TEA requirements and strive to do so in a way that will keep our students and staff as safe as possible.

TISD has purchased special disinfectants including Re-Juv-Nal and Phenomenal to target the coronavirus, influenza and a plethora of other organisms that cause illnesses. Our building maintenance staff will disinfect high touch areas, classrooms, offices, hallways, common areas, and entrances/exits regularly.

In addition, hand sanitizer will be placed in every room/office as well as the entrances to each building. Each restroom hand washing area will be stocked with soap and monitored throughout the day. PPE equipment packet including face shields, reusable masks, gloves, sanitizer and gowns (specific to areas of need) will be distributed to campus principals and supervisors before school begins. Self-filling water fountains will be retrofitted and/or installed across campuses.

TISD will implement increased signage around campuses promoting disease mitigation strategies, further increased cleaning and sanitation practices as well as frequent reminders of hand hygiene and social distancing. We will follow all Texas Education Agency (TEA) guidelines which require teachers, staff and students to self-screen for COVID-19 symptoms before coming on campus each day. Additionally, we will comply with all health and safety protocols outlined by the Texas Department of Health and Human Services in conjunction with Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) recommendations. On-Campus visitors will be limited to essential visits only. At this time, parents/guardians will not be able to eat breakfast or lunch or deliver breakfast or lunch to front offices for students due to increased safety protocols.

TISD will provide a buff style mask for all Pre-Kindergarten-12th grade students.

Pre-Kindergarten students will be required to wear masks during transition times and dismissal and not in the classroom.

Kindergarten-5th grade students will be required to wear masks during transition times, dismissal and in the classroom when not socially distanced. When students are seated at their desk for instruction, they will be allowed to pull their mask down. We encourage the buff style of mask for anyone providing their own for this age group.

Grades 6-12 students will be required to wear masks in common areas, during transition times, dismissal and in the classroom when not socially distanced. TISD will provide a mask or students can provide their own that meets the dress code policy. We encourage the buff style of mask for anyone providing their own for this age group.

Exceptions will be made based on the developmental appropriateness and need of individual students.

Staff will wear masks/face shields.


BUFF STYLE MASK EXAMPLE

Yes, transportation will be provided for all who qualify.

We encourage parents/guardians who can provide car transportation to take their student(s) to school, if possible, in order to better comply with safety recommendations however, bus transportation will be provided as normal.

Buses will be regularly cleaned and social distance maintained when possible. Parents/Guardians should self-screen students before putting them on a bus. Students will be required to wear a mask or face covering on the bus where developmentally appropriate and where social distancing cannot be enforced.

Transportation will not be provided for remote learning students to attend UIL sanctioned activities on campus.

We encourage parents who can provide car transportation to take their student(s) to school if possible in order to better comply with safety recommendations however, bus transportation will be provided as normal.

Social distancing will be maintained when possible. Students will be required when riding buses to wear face coverings and use hand sanitizer prior to boarding the school bus. Students are required to remain seated at all times and keep their hands and arms to themselves. Students should not touch each other or share any items. School buses will be cleaned and disinfected regularly focusing on high-touch surfaces such as bus seats, steering wheels, knobs and door handles.

By July 16, parents will receive a commitment form via email and by mail the following week. This will include instructions on how to choose an instructional delivery method for each child in their family.

The Commitment Form will need to be completed online or paper copy returned to the district by Monday, July 27th.

Paper commitment forms may be dropped off at any TISD campus or the TISD Administration Office at 4241 Summerhill Road.

You may also mail, fax or email your completed Commitment Form to:
TISD Administration Office, 4241 Summerhill Road, Texarkana, TX 75503
Fax: 903.791.2995
Email: Rosalind.Mayfield@txkisd.net

Parents will have until August 5th to change their minds about placement. Parents will receive an email and a mailed letter explaining this process and timeline in more detail.

TISD investigated multiple options, including models such as half-time in-person and half-time remote. Many factors were examined, including whether or not half-time attendance actually limits exposure, the logistics for families and for classroom teachers and the evolving guidelines from the Texas Education Agency. The administration ruled it out due to a number of implementation issues. There were too many apparent challenges, including childcare for parents and staff, bus transportation scheduling, cleaning protocols, academic scheduling and others. We cannot offer an option that poses so many obstacles for families and staff.

Ultimately, it was a model we do not think we can effectively deliver; therefore, a hybrid model was removed from consideration. It also did not meet the latest TEA guidelines. We determined that providing just the two choices so that families can make the best personal decision was the best option.

Yes, there will be defined opportunities built into the school year where changes can be made to the educational setting. While the district is asking you to make a decision during the summer regarding how your child will start the new school year, please know we understand that you are having to make this decision based on the current situation with COVID-19 and with potentially changing information. Parents/Guardians will have until August 5th to change their minds about beginning of the year placement.

After the school year begins, a parent who chooses remote instruction for their child and later wants to switch to in-person instruction may do so for the upcoming six weeks period during the dates listed below by contacting their campus office.

  • September 16-18 for the 2nd six weeks beginning September 28
  • October 28-30 for the 3rd six weeks beginning November 9
  • December 10-11 for the 4th six weeks beginning January 6
  • February 3-5 for the 5th six weeks beginning February 17
  • March 31-April 2 for the 6th six weeks beginning April 13

A parent who chooses in-person instruction for their child and later wants to switch to remote instruction may do so at any time by contacting their campus office.

Please note that if a student switches between in-person learning and remote learning, then that student may not have the same teacher(s) or course schedule, as teachers may or may not be teaching both a remote and an in-person class.

Special population students moving from On-Campus Learning to At Home Remote Learning, or from At Home to On-Campus, could result in a change in the delivery of certain educational services and/or related services provided as a part of their individualized program (Section 504 or special education, for example). A committee meeting with parental participation will be conducted to document the appropriate changes in services.

Each family must consider their unique situation to make a personal determination. We are providing as much information as is known at the time so families can make informed decisions.

We will be able to provide instruction to all students in whichever format their families choose. We will also comply with recommendations regarding social distancing, as well as health and hygiene protocols. There will not be a limit to the number of students who can select the in-person option.

TISD will ask each parent/guardian to choose either the On-Campus Learning option or Remote At-Home learning option by July 27th. If parents/guardians select the on-campus option, TISD will schedule your student into the course requests made earlier in the year, to the extent reasonably possible. If you select the remote option, that process will be communicated at a later date depending on secondary course availability and options.

While TISD understands that many questions remain regarding the new school year and that family sentiments may change as COVID-19 conditions evolve, timely feedback is critical to TISD in preparing for the first day of school on August 19.

We must have data to work with when planning for master schedules, classroom space, remote learning and how we can best meet the social-emotional needs of our students when they return. TISD wants to provide all staff with the strongest foundation possible to prepare for the needs of all students.

Counselors are available to support students academically, socially, and emotionally and can provide mental health support or resources for families who may be struggling emotionally.

Contact information for your student's campus counselor can be found on the campus website page.

To ensure staff is equipped to address social, emotional and mental health concerns, TISD will continue to host training opportunities for all staff including trauma-informed care, mental health first aid and social emotional learning.

All TISD students will be taught by TISD teachers. If a remote learning student switches to in-person, they may not have the same teachers, as teachers may or may not be teaching both a remote and in-person class.

Remote courses will be taught by TISD teachers but not necessarily a teacher from your student's home campus.

No, the current TISD calendar is accurate and will stand for the 2020-21 academic year. All information is subject to change based on any state or local mandates.

You can find the TISD 2020-2021 School Calendar at the following link:
TISD 2020-2021 School Calendar

No. According to TEA guidelines, the grading policies for remote learning must be consistent with the District's grading policies for in-person learning.

Regardless of which learning option you choose for your child, the expectations for coursework and the grading system will be the same for both in-person and remote learning.

TISD believes this is the most fair and equitable solution for all of our students. Applicable courses in 9th-12th grade will be included in calculating GPA and class rank for both on-site and remote learning students.

Overall progress on learning outcomes will be communicated in a "traditional" format. Assignments and grades will be entered into TEAMS.

The expectations for coursework and guidelines for grading for on-campus learning and remote learning will be the same. Progress reports, report cards and special education IEP Goal progress reports will be sent out as normal.

Yes. The Texas Education Agency (TEA) has indicated that STAAR and End-of-Course testing will still occur during the 2020-2021 school year, in compliance with state and federal legislation.

Once further guidance is provided, TISD will follow TEA guidance on administering STAAR ALT 2, TELPAS and TELPAS ALT.

Administration of beginning of year assessments will provide relevant data to help educators develop appropriate instructional plans to address any gaps in student learning as a result of the disruption to classroom instruction and the summer break.

Curriculum documents have been evaluated and revised to include prior grade level critical standards that students may not have mastered during the spring closure.

Instructional planning will include efforts to close gaps in learning while still addressing new content.

Special Education teachers and therapists will assess special education student performance once each child returns to school and will individually consider the need for compensatory services or extended school year services. ARD Committee decisions will be made to finalize these services, as necessary.

We are working under the latest guidance provided by the Texas Education Agency (TEA), Governor Greg Abbott and various health agencies and organizations.

In a recent communication with the TEA, Commissioner Morath stated that school districts could not mandate parents/guardians keep their children at home for remote learning. Remote learning can only be an option.

TISD is therefore required to provide on-site instruction and does not believe a hybrid model is sustainable for our parents/guardians, students and staff.

As the situation with COVID-19 evolves, that direction may change. TISD will continue to look for updated guidance from the state as to the most appropriate way to educate students while also prioritizing the needs of the whole child and the health and safety of students, staff and the community. Until we hear otherwise, TISD is moving forward with planning and preparation to serve students under the guidelines we have been given.

TISD will follow all provisions of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) which is in effect through December 31, 2020.

We also have a pool of substitute teachers who have committed to working for the 2020-2021 school year and will continue to recruit and train substitute teachers.

Survey results from our TISD teachers and other TISD staff members will be reviewed to ensure that we garner valuable feedback in the decision making process.

We are asking teachers and staff about their greatest needs for training, instructional resources, technology and safety measures in preparation for the two Smart Restart learning options. In addition, training on COVID-19 health and safety precautions will be provided to all employees.

We want to reassure teachers, parents and students that all TISD classrooms and campuses will be equipped with the supplies necessary to support effective health and safety practices.

A Smart Restart Staff Handbook will provide additional information and guidance for all TISD employees after reviewing the feedback from staff and parents.

Instructional Services coordinators, instructional coaches and teachers have been collaborating throughout the spring to evaluate and revise curriculum documents to include prior grade level critical standards that students may not have mastered during the closure. In order to close student gaps in learning while still addressing content, instructional planning for teachers and interventionists is a district priority.

Remote learning for 2020-2021 will be different than it was in the spring. Students who select remote learning will be required to participate in class and demonstrate progress on a daily basis. If a student does not participate daily, they will be marked absent and could lose credit for the class. Remote learning will be a full course load of instruction and assignments that is comparable to what students who are attending school in person will be required to complete.

All guidelines are under development and subject to change as we are reviewing each campus and student needs. Meals will look a little different based on the age level of the students.

For elementary campuses, breakfast will be a grab bag that the students will take to the classroom upon arrival to the campus. Lunch will be a hot box meal that will be taken to the classroom or outside locations.

Decisions regarding meals for middle school and high school students are still being assessed.

All remote learners are eligible for breakfast and lunch. Pick-Up location will be the Texas Middle School Bus Loading area. Times are yet to be determined.

Our district has always valued our volunteers and parental involvement. These relationships continue to be essential and important for our students and staff. At this time, because of safety concerns, we will have to limit visitor/volunteer access to the schools. Visitors on-site will be limited to only those essential to school operations.

To ensure the safety of students and staff, whenever possible parent conferences and visits will be held virtually. If this is not possible, prescheduled conferences on-site will be held following safety protocols and social distancing. During these visits, parents and other visitors must wear masks, follow virus prevention and mitigation requirements of the school.

Parents will not be allowed in the building during drop off and pick-up. We ask that you remain in your vehicle. Upon arrival, students will be guided into the building and brought to the car for dismissal. Please note that this procedure is to be followed beginning the first day of school.

All emergency pick-ups must be cleared through the campus front office before or upon arrival. Example: call the office upon arrival from car vs. walking into the main office.

There will be no food deliveries by parents/visitors to the campus front office and parents will not be able to eat breakfast or lunch with their child on-site in order to maintain safety at this time.

The National Association of School Psychologists and National Association of School Nurses provides guidance to parents on how to provide accurate prevention information and facts to students without causing undue alarm. Please see the document below for guidelines on"Talking to Child About COVID-19."
NASP Talking to Children About COVID-19

Please call any TISD campus or the TISD Administration building at 903-794-3651, ext. 1030 to request a Commitment Form. You may also send an email to Rosalind.Mayfield@txkisd.net and she will be glad to assist you.

Please click here to complete the Commitment Form online.

Please click here (English/Spanish) to print Commitment Form.

Yes, you may change your selection on the Commitment Form by August 5th by contacting the campus office at your school and they will give you further directions on how to make the change. After that any changes would need to be done at the end of the grading period. After the school year begins, a parent who chooses remote instruction for their child and later wants to switch to in-person instruction may do so for the upcoming six weeks period during the dates listed below by contacting their campus office.

  • September 16-18 for the 2nd six weeks beginning September 28
  • October 28-30 for the 3rd six weeks beginning November 9
  • December 10-11 for the 4th six weeks beginning January 6
  • February 3-5 for the 5th six weeks beginning February 17
  • March 31-April 2 for the 6th six weeks beginning April 13

A parent who chooses in-person instruction for their child and later wants to switch to remote instruction may do so at any time by contacting their campus office.

Please note that if a student switches between in-person learning and remote learning, then that student may not have the same teacher(s) or course schedule, as teachers may or may not be teaching both a remote and an in-person class.

Special population student's moving from On-Campus Learning to At Home Remote Learning, or from At Home to On-Campus, could result in a change in the delivery of certain educational services and/or related services provided as a part of their individualized program (Section 504 or special education, for example). A committee meeting with parental participation will be conducted to document the appropriate changes in services.

According to health authorities, COVID-19 infection manifests similarly to other respiratory illness in children. Although children manifest many of the same symptoms of COVID-19 infection as adults, some differences are noteworthy. According to the CDC, children may be less likely to have fever, may be less likely to present with fever as an initial symptom and may have only gastrointestinal tract symptoms. A student or staff member excluded because of symptoms of COVID-19 should be encouraged to contact their health care provider to discuss testing and medical care. In the absence of testing, students or staff should follow local health department guidance for exclusion.

CDC Clinical Presentation

Pediatric patients with COVID-19 may experience the following signs or symptoms over the course of the disease: Fever, Cough, Nasal congestion or rhinorrhea, Sore throat, Shortness of breath, Diarrhea, Nausea or vomiting, Fatigue, Headache, Myalgia, Poor feeding or poor appetite.

The predominant signs and symptoms of COVID-19 reported to date among all patients are similar to other viral respiratory infections, including fever, cough, and shortness of breath. Although these signs and symptoms may occur at any time during the overall disease course, children with COVID-19 may not initially present with fever and cough as often as adult patients.

Tiger Learning Centers located at Nash Elementary, Morriss Elementary, Spring Lake Park Elementary, Waggoner Creek Elementary and Wake Village Elementary will open starting August 19. All centers, except for Waggoner Creek Elementary, will be open from 3:00 - 6:00 p.m. for After-School care. Waggoner Creek Elementary will be open from 6:45 a.m. - 6:00 p.m. Locations will follow all regulations set forth by the Texas Department of Health and Human Services and TISD to ensure the health and safety of your children. Presently, there is space available at our Spring Lake Park Elementary and Wake Village Elementary locations. Call 903.792.7991 ext. 7 to reserve your spot today.

All students are expected to participate in instruction based on regular campus hours.

Elementary 7:50 a.m. - 3:10 p.m.
Middle School 7:50 a.m. - 3:10 p.m.
High School 8:25 a.m. - 3:50 p.m.

Elementary, middle and high school students will generally follow a typical school day from start to finish in a virtual environment with times of live interaction (synchronous) and independent online work (asynchronous). Depending on the student and his or her grade, selected coursework and individual needs, the amount of synchronous versus asynchronous time may differ from student to student.

Students will have both synchronous and asynchronous lessons that include live lessons in addition to pre-recorded lessons. They may receive instruction in the following ways (including, but not limited to):

  • Authentic student work/assignments with timely and relevant feedback for continued progress in learning of the standard
  • Hands-on activities which may need some at-home support
  • Choice boards and playlists
  • Web-based curriculum completion of assigned tasks and turning in of assignments
  • Assessments
  • Video lessons
  • Project-based learning/assignments
  • Group/partner projects
  • Google classroom assignments

At this time, parents/guardians will not be able to eat breakfast or lunch or deliver breakfast or lunch to front offices for students due to increased safety protocols.

Campuses will limit the number of students per recess group. Staggered schedules can be utilized when needed. All students and staff will be required to use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer before entering the playground and upon exiting the playground. Multiple play areas will be designated and assigned for individual classes. Masks will not be required in the play areas.

PE classes will be conducted in the gym and outdoors as much as possible. Appropriate social distancing measures will be followed.
Fine Arts and PE equipment will be sanitized and wiped down after each use.
Students will use their own art supplies as appropriate.
Computer Lab settings will be configured to allow for six-foot social distancing. When social distancing is not possible, dividers will be installed between computer work stations and students will be required to wear a mask.

All emergency or early pick-ups must be cleared through the campus front office before or upon arrival. Example: call the office upon arrival from car vs. walking into the main office.

Special education students will follow the district's health and safety protocols as well as the district's attendance and engagement guidelines for traditional On-Campus Learning and At- Home Remote Learning. Special considerations will be given on an individual basis based upon the unique needs of the student. As necessary, an ARD meeting will be held to accurately document within the IEP the special education and related services the student requires whether served On-Campus or At-Home Remote. Please reference the TISD Special Education Guidance for updated information.