MALAKOFF–With a start date of Aug. 19, Malakoff ISD (MISD) plans to open its doors to students with strict safety precautions in place. A district plan was released July 29 to students and parents with details.
MISD is planning for two instructional environments, face-to-face learning or virtual/remote learning. The plan states that both remote and face-to-face learning styles will utilize Seesaw or Google Classroom, provide similar expectations around coursework and follow the same grading guidelines.
MISD explains face-to-face learning as attending class in-person, five days a week, with additional safety measures in alignment with state and federal guidelines and recommendations. In this setting, teachers will provide face-to-face instruction, learning resources and support utilizing Seesaw for grades PK through fifth and Google Classroom for grades PK through 12th.
At Home Learning
At home learning allows students to engage in high quality learning experiences, while utilizing MISD instructional resources and connect meaningfully with their teachers and other students. The Texas Education Agency (TEA) requires students who participate in at home learning be actively engaged in their own learning for a minimum number of minutes daily, grades PK-5th 180 minutes or three hours of instruction and grades sixth through 12th 240 minutes or four hours of instruction daily. It is not required that students remain online during the entire duration of minutes instead engage in a blended learning program that will include a variety of learning activities and assignments.
MISD has stated in the district plan that students in grades sixth through 12th that choose at home learning will not be able to participate in on campus extra-curricular activities.
Protocols for Screening and
MISD states that staff and students will be required to submit an attestation form weekly stating they are free of COVID-19 symptoms. If a staff member experiences any change, they must notify their direct supervisor and parents should notify the school office. Students and staff will be screened for COVID-19 symptoms daily and those with symptoms will be separated from others and sent home.
Further in-depth details to the screening and isolation protocols can be found on pages 18 through 20 of the district’s plan.
Daily, each classroom, restroom and high touch areas will be disinfected. Cafeterias will be disinfected between lunch periods and hand sanitizer will be available at the main entry to the campus, in classrooms, in the cafeteria and in common areas throughout the campus. Staff and students are expected to regularly wash or sanitize their hands throughout the day.
School systems are required by TEA to provide instruction to students on appropriate hygiene practices and other mitigation practices adopted by the local school system. The training will include the practice of covering coughs and sneezes with a tissue and if not available, to cover coughs and sneezes with their elbows. Used tissues should be thrown in the trash, hands should be washed immediately with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or hand sanitizer should be used.
When possible, campuses will be designating separate entrances for car, bus, walker’s and daycares. For dismissal, campuses will utilize a staggered dismissal group. It will be a requirement to wear a mask while utilizing bus transportation for both driver and passengers.
As some parents have already noticed from the school supply list, a reusable water bottle has been added to their students list. This is to mitigate the use of water fountains.
“As a school district, Malakoff ISD looks forward to welcoming students back to school Aug. 19. Despite the challenges with COVID-19, our district will continue to provide the excellent education to our students, which will include both in-person and remote learning environments. As the public health crisis continues, we have been planning for the opening of the 2020-21 school year with a focus on the health, safety and well-being of our staff, students and community.”
To read the plan in its entirety, visit www.malakoffisd.org.