Category Archives: Parents

HISD hosts first virtual Parent University of the 2020-21 school year

The Houston Independent School District kicked off its third year of Parent University on Tuesday with the first of six virtual workshops.

The theme of the first session was “2020-2021 School Year 101” and focused on the district’s “Reconnect Safely, Return Strong” reopening plan. The workshop’s general session walked attendees through important parts of the district’s Instructional Continuity Plan.  

“Team HISD has been hard at work to adapt to this new reality of social distancing due to COVID-19,” August Hamilton, HISD General Manager of Strategy and Innovation, said during the evening’s introduction. “This evening offers us the ability to share with some of you this work and the ability to better inform our parents how they can support their students during this time of online learning.”

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Selection period for in-person or virtual instruction begins Sept. 21

Starting with the second six weeks of the 2020-2021 school year, Houston Independent School District families will be required to select either in-person or virtual instruction for students. The first day of the second six weeks is October 19.

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HISD seeking families and home instructors for HIPPY program

HISD’s Elementary Curriculum department is still recruiting families and part-time home instructors to work with the Home Instruction for Parents of Preschool Youngsters (HIPPY) program for the 2020-2021 school year.

HIPPY is a school readiness program for 3-, 4-, and 5-year-old children that helps parents prepare their preschoolers for academic success. Instructors virtually instruct parents for an hour a week over a 30-week period during the school year, and model research-based learning activities designed to help Pre-K children develop skills in reading, math, and science.

Parents then practice the activities with their children over the week until they learn a new activity during the next lesson. Children whose parents participate in the program consistently outperform their peers in reading and math in kindergarten and first grade.

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Campuses distribute technology to prepare for first day of virtual learning

In preparation for the upcoming school year, HISD parents began lining up at Northline Elementary School early to receive technology that will help when online classes begin next week.

Lourdes Villafuerte’s daughter Mila, a rising fourth-grader at Northline, received a Chromebook that she is excited to start using. Villafuerte says she’s relieved the district is making technology available to students during this challenging time.

“I really appreciate that they have tried to accommodate as many families as they have,” she said. I am still concerned about schools opening in October, so if we can continue with online learning, we would like to take that approach, and this makes that possible for us.”

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HISD’s Camp Spark prepares students, families for virtual learning

Alberto Varona, a rising ninth-grader from DeBakey High School for Health Professions, has dreams of pursuing a career in science, and after one week at HISD’s all-virtual Camp Spark, those dreams are stronger than ever.

“One day, I have dreams of creating medicine that will help people,” he said. “Camp Spark has really encouraged me to pursue those dreams.” 

The two-week camp, which is offered to students in grades pre-K through 12 and provided at no cost, is designed to get students re-engaged as the district prepares for online learning, and provides online lessons that focus on physical fitness, science, literacy, math, internet safety, technology and art.

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HISD launches new student information system, parent portal

The Houston Independent School District has moved to a new Student Information System (SIS) for the 2020-2021 school year. The new system includes a parent portal that will launch on Aug. 31.

Parents will be able to use the HISD Connect Parent Portal as a tool to track information related to their student’s schedule, grades, attendance, academic history, and more.

“Collaboration between educators and parents is more important than ever, as we prepare to reconnect safely and return strong,” HISD Interim Superintendent Grenita Lathan said. “HISD Connect will integrate seamlessly with online learning.”

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HISD to launch Parent Virtual Learning Course

The Houston Independent School District will soon launch an online course designed to provide parents with the tools needed to support their child’s transition to the online classroom this fall.

The Parent Introduction to Virtual Learning online course will be available on Monday, Aug. 10 at HoustonISD.org/ParentCourse. It is designed to introduce virtual learning and provide guidance to parents on the HISD @ H.OM.E platform. The course should be completed no later than Friday, Sept. 4.

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HISD to launch HISD @ H.O.M.E. Hotline to support fall distance learning

The Houston Independent School District will soon launch the HISD @ H.O.M.E. Hotline to provide timely answers to questions from students and parents about fall distance learning.

Starting on Monday, Aug. 3, students and parents can call the HISD @ H.O.M.E. Hotline at 713-556-INFO (4636), Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Operators will be on hand to answer questions in English and Spanish pertaining to HISD @ H.O.M.E.

HISD launched HISD @ H.O.M.E. (Home-based Online Mobile Education), a distance learning plan, in the spring to ensure students’ academic and non-academic needs were met as the district campuses and offices physically closed due to COVID-19 precautions.

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HISD to hold first virtual Parent University of the 2020-21 school year

The Houston Independent School District will kick off its third year of Parent University on Tuesday, Sept. 15 from 6 to 8 p.m. with the first of six virtual workshops.

The workshops will connect parents and children to resources offered by the district to create successful academic careers as well as safe and healthy environments at home and at school. 

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HISD launches ‘Let’s Stay Connected’ mental health hotline for students and parents

The Houston Independent School District has announced the launch of Let’s Stay Connected, a mental health hotline for students and parents to provide emotional, social, and psychological support to students and parents who feel the need for assistance.

Students and parents may call the Let’s Stay Connected Hotline at 713-556-1340 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

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