GISD options

After receiving more instructions from the Texas Education Agency about how instruction is to safely continue despite COVID-19, the Greenville Independent School District is now offering families three different options when it comes to how their children will receive instruction during the 2020-21 school year.

After receiving more instructions from the Texas Education Agency about how instruction is to safely continue despite COVID-19, the Greenville Independent School District is now offering families three different options when it comes to how their children will receive instruction during the 2020-21 school year.

Online registration for the options began Wednesday, and families’ choices are:

• Traditional school model, in which students attend face-to-face classes on campus, and receive direct instruction from their teacher;

• At-home “synchronous” model, in which students learn online, but in real-time with the rest of the class, and;

• At-home “asynchronous” model, in which students don’t necessarily work with the rest of the class at the same time to allow families greater flexibility.

Regardless of which option a family chooses, the district’s rules regarding attendance and truancy still apply.

For those who choose the in-person instruction option, the districted plans to minimize large gatherings like pep rallies and assemblies, and will observe social distancing when possible. Staff working inside school buildings and students aged 10 and older will be required to wear masks or face shields.

While transportation by bus will be provided for students who need it, the district encourages families to drive, carpool, or walk with their children to school to reduce the possibility of exposure to the virus. For those who have no alternative other than to use the bus, hand sanitizer with be provided when students enter the bus.

If a student or staff member tests positive for coronavirus, the district plans to do the following:

• The school nurse will provide a clinical assessment to determine if the student needs to be sent home.

• When it’s decided that a student should go home due to illness, the district asks that they are picked up within 30 minutes and no later than one hour from the time the campus contacted the student’s parent or guardian. If the student is of driving age and drove themselves, they will be sent home with parent permission.

• Other students will be removed from the classroom and taken to an alternate location on campus so that the classroom can be disinfected.

• Communication will be provided to the parents of students who came in contact with a confirmed COVID-19-positive student or staff member.

• Students and staff members who test positive for COVID-19 will need to submit a letter of good health from a physician's office before being able to return to campus.

• Students or staff members who came into close contact with a confirmed COVID-19 positive individual will be asked to self-quarantine for 14 days and may not return to campus during that time. Students, regardless of the chosen learning plan, will participate in online learning while they are quarantined.

Those with questions about GISD’s plans for the 2020-21 school year and the registration process may either visit the district’s online FAQ at www.greenvilleisd.com/Page/2966 or call their help desk at 903-408-4430, 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., today or tomorrow, or at 903-457-2500, this coming Monday through Thursday.

Travis Hairgrove is a news reporter and features writer at the Herald-Banner and covers city government for many municipalities in Hunt County. To reach him outside of business hours, email THairgroveReporter@gmail.com.

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