With the federal government extending social distancing guidelines through the end of April, the Houston Independent School District will remain closed, providing online instruction until further notice.
In addition to
the federal guidelines, this decision comes in response to the new executive
order by Texas Gov. Greg Abbott on Tuesday to close all Texas schools until May
4. During this time, we will continue remote learning.
classroom instruction resumes, the district has launched HISD
@ H.O.M.E. (Home-based
Online Mobile Education), a distance learning plan to ensure students’ academic
and non-academic needs are met as the district remains closed due to COVID-19
The Houston Independent School District is launching HISD @ H.O.M.E. TV to provide educational programming as part of the district’s HISD @ H.O.M.E distance learning plan.
HISD @ H.O.M.E. TV will
kick off on Tuesday, March 31 with instructional videos that include lessons from
teachers and teacher development specialists in several subject areas,
including math, science, reading and writing, social studies, and fine arts.
“Our mission is
to support students in every community with the educational resources they need
to thrive, and this is an important step in that effort – especially given the
current need to deliver instruction virtually,” said Interim Superintendent
Grenita Lathan. “I want to thank our HISD Communications and Academics teams
for supporting our students during these unprecedented times.”
In a matter of eight days, the food distribution sites
operated by the Houston Independent School District in partnership with the
Houston Food Bank assisted nearly 40,000 families.
The 61 food distributions served approximately 1 million
pounds of food to families in need before being canceled late Wednesday. Nearly
2,000 staff and volunteers assisted with the efforts and were able to serve
5,000 families per day throughout HISD.
The cancellation of the distribution sites will remain in
effect as the district re-evaluates its process for safely delivering this
service to students and families.
Rucker Elementary School Principal Eileen Puente knew that
her staff would need to rethink how they would engage with students following
Spring Break and the closure of HISD campuses due to COVID-19.
So, on Thursday, Puente and over 20 of her teachers and staff convened at Rucker with their vehicles, formed a parade, and drove through nearby streets and neighborhoods to check in with their students from a safe distance.
Like tens of thousands of other elementary school children across HISD, the 400-plus students, who call the southeast neighborhood school home, will not be returning to campus for several weeks due to intensifying precautions around the spread of COVID-19.
The Monday after Spring Break, pictures of students proudly
showcasing their family heritage flooded Wilson Montessori’s Facebook and
With schools closed amid COVID-19 precautions, the
Montrose-based campus has found a creative way to support their students and
families during this time with a Virtual Spirit Week.
“We must be mindful that this may be a difficult time for
children and their families,” said Wilson Principal Shameika Sykes-Salvador. “While
we won’t be seeing them in person, it’s still important for children and
families not to feel isolated.”
service will still be available and social distancing required at all locations
Due to the threat
of inclement weather, the Houston Independent School District and the Houston
Food Bank are rescheduling Friday’s food distribution sites for Monday to
ensure the safety of families and volunteers.
food distribution sites will extend operations throughout the week of Monday,
pickup service will continue to be available at all 39 food distribution sites
districtwide next week to help promote personal health and social distancing. Families
who do not have transportation and must walk to the site can continue to stand
in line but will be required to stand six feet apart from each other. HISD
Police and staff volunteers will be on site to enforce these measures and help
with crowd control.
As districts around the state and across the country continue to grapple with how to proceed in this unprecedented challenge to public health and education, the Houston Independent School District supports the nation’s need to flatten the curve of the COVID-19 pandemic. As such, HISD will extend its districtwide closurethroughFriday, April 10. All schools and offices are scheduled to reopen on Monday, April 13.
District administration will re-evaluate on Monday, April 6, to
determine whether a longer closure beyond April 10 will be necessary. Texas
Gov. Greg Abbott has announced that the state will waive STAAR testing
requirements for the 2019-2020 school year. STAAR testing was scheduled to
begin in April. The district also will provide more information about online learning and
alternative education later this week.
The Houston Independent
School District and the Houston Food Bank will offer curbside pickup service at
all 36 food distribution sites districtwide beginning March 16 to help promote personal health
and social distancing.
Families who do not have transportation and must walk
to the site can continue to stand in line but will be required to stand six
feet apart from each other. HISD Police and staff volunteers will be on site to
enforce these measures and help with crowd control.
“Social distancing is a key measure we must implement
to prevent the spread of COVID-19, so adding curbside pickup and keeping lines
spaced out are important steps,” said HISD Interim Superintendent
Grenita Lathan. “Thanks to our partners at the Houston Food Bank and our police
and staff volunteers, we are able to safely distribute meals to our families in need
during this time.”
HISD students from
across the district gathered at the Hattie Mae White Educational Center this
week to show off their reading comprehension skills during the annual Name that
Book competition finals.
At the high-school
level, the top three competitors were Carnegie Vanguard High School, The Kinder
High School for the Performing and Visual Arts, and Bellaire High School. T.H.
Rogers, Garden Oaks, and West Briar Middle Schools earned bragging rights in
grades 7 and 8, while Bush, Condit, and Horn Elementary Schools took the
highest honors at the finals held for grades 3-6.