Calhoun County ISD board members convened an emergency meeting March 19 regarding the COVID-19 outbreak in Texas and its effects on the county’s students, parents, and CCISD personnel.
The board approved a resolution to extend leave during emergency school closings and the transition to remote learning from traditional classroom instruction.
Under the resolution, CCISD employees will continue to get paid during the shutdown.
“The board of trustees approves continuing wage payments for all employees,” CCISD Superintendent Larry Nichols said reading the resolution. “Contractual and non-contractual, salaried and non-salaried up to regularly scheduled work hours per day.”
Nichols added the board is convinced that “this action is necessary to ensure the financial wellbeing of district employees while providing continuity of district staffing when schools reopen.”
Before the meeting, Governor Greg Abbott announced earlier in the day that all Texas schools will close through Friday, April 3.
Nichols talked to the Wave about passing the resolution under these circumstances due to COVID-19.
“We want to do a good job leading our students and staff through this unusual time,” Nichols said.
Nichols added that he would like to say “sorry” to the students that cannot participate in “various activities that occur in this period of time.”
“There are a lot of meaningful activities that occur during this time, and we don’t know when this time will end exactly,” Nichols said.
CCISD begins remote learning Monday, March 30, and Nichols said that a lot of the staff are “incredibly” familiar with online activities, but some have not used it as much.
Some staff will learn, Nichols added. He said the students will do fine and figure it out, but the staff will determine how they deliver this effectively.
During this time of distress for many Calhoun County ISD parents, Nichols said that students should continue to connect with each other by phone. If there is something that the district can do for parents, they should go to the CCISD website.
“We’ll be manning the phones at the campuses at this time, so please let us know,” Nichols said. “And once again we anticipate full-blown instruction will begin Monday, March 30.”
The board discussed curbside pickup which will be scheduled and published for parents and CCISD students to receive their materials needed for remote learning.
The board also talked to Marcus Martinez, the Head of the Technology Department for CCISD, about installing hotspots for students who don’t have internet.
CCISD will also provide meals for students beginning Wednesday, March 25. According to the district, this is a grab and go format, and each meal will include additional breakfast items for the next day.
Meals will be provided to students 18 or younger, and 21 years and younger for special needs.
The district said that students must be present to receive meals, and they advise parents to stay in their vehicles during pickup.
Locations for the meal pickups are Calhoun High School, Travis Middle School, HJM Elementary, JR Elementary, Seadrift School, Port O’Connor Elementary, and the former Point Comfort Elementary, now the Formosa training facility (Pending Approval).
Curbside meal pickup hours are 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday through Friday.
For more information about remote learning, curbside pickup schedule, and meal pickup, please go to CCISD’s website at www.calcoisd.org/district_news/c_o_v_i_d-19_updates.