Schools closed indefinitely, online learning for credits begins April 13 (Updated 4/2/2020)

In+an+unprecedented+move+Arlington+ISD+closed+all+78+schools+and+canceled+all+activities+until+March+30+in+an+effort+to+prevent+the+possible+spread+of+coronavirus.+

In an unprecedented move Arlington ISD closed all 78 schools and canceled all activities until March 30 in an effort to prevent the possible spread of coronavirus.

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4/2/2020, 4 p.m.

The district has been sending regular updates to parents via email, each covering a handful of frequently asked questions. The full list is available online, but here the ones most applicable to AHS students.

How long will Arlington ISD schools be closed?

The Arlington ISD will not be resuming classes on our campuses on April 6. We do not know at this time when school on our campuses will resume. In the meantime, the At-Home Learning Hub is growing daily so that your children continue their learning. The majority of courses will be uploaded and ready for credits on April 13, 2020.

The situation continues to be fluid, and we are following guidance from our city, county and state officials. When health officials determine that it is safe to resume school we will reach out to you with a date.

Will the At-Home Learning Hub continued to be used during the extended closure?

Yes, the At-Home Learning Hub will provide student learning opportunities throughout the entire time that the district is closed. In fact, the Hub is being implemented in phases and will continue to improve and grow as we add more content and resources.

Phase 1 – March 16 – 27, 2020 

  • Teachers will NOT assign grades
  • Students are encouraged to complete activities
  • Devices will be distributed to students who do not have them.

Phase 2 – March 30 – April 9 

  • Instruction and activities will be provided to students through Seesaw and/or paper-based learning packets for grades PK-2, Canvas for grades 3-12 with a focus on core content courses of English Language Arts, Math, Social Studies and Science.
  • Arlington ISD teachers will participate in professional learning on how to deliver instruction remotely in preparation for Phase 3.
  • Students who have been participating in Edgenuity programs for credit/grade recovery prior to Spring Break will be able to continue to their learning on that platform. A link will be provided directly on the At-Home Learning Hub.
  • AP coursework for secondary studentswill be supported using the AP Classroom tool provided by College Board which can be accessed on the At-Home Learning Hub
  • Teachers will NOT assign grades that will impact a student’s grade point average (GPA).
  • Students are asked to complete activities/assignments to maintain their learning they received this school year so far.

Phase 3 – April 10 – end of closure

  • All content areas and courses will be taught by Arlington ISD teachers using Seesaw and Canvas.
  • An alternate paper-based learning packet will continue to be provided for Pre-K – 2ndgrade students in addition to the Seesaw lessons accessible on the At-Home Learning Hub.
  • Resources will continue to be available in the At-Home Learning Hub

Coursework will count for grades and credits as of April 13, 2020. Additional information on grading and GPA is being developed and will be provided prior to the beginning of Phase 3.

I have heard there are new guidelines stating that children do not need to be present in order to receive a meal each weekday. Is that accurate?

The USDA recently waived the requirement that children must be present to receive a meal at one of our distribution sites. Parents/guardians can now pickup meals for their children who are not present, but they must show one of the following forms of identification:

  • Student ID badge from the child’s school
  • Student report card from the 2019-20 school year
  • Birth certificate
  • An official letter/email from a district, charter or private school showing children in the household

What campuses are the sites for the Student Meal Plan pickup?

The district is adding its 24th Student Meal Plan site at Blanton Elementary, located at 1900 S. Collins Street in Arlington. Blanton Elementary, which will also serve breakfast and lunch from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on weekdays beginning on Wednesday, April 1, joins other Student Meal Plan sites: Dan Dipert Career+Technical Center, Sam Houston High School, Ferguson Education Center, Bailey Junior High, Barnett Junior High, Boles Junior High, Nichols Junior High, Ousley Junior High, Shackelford Junior High, Workman Junior High, Young Junior High, Crouch Elementary, Farrell Elementary, Knox Elementary, Larson Elementary, Miller Elementary, Pope Elementary, Sherrod Elementary, Short Elementary, Speer Elementary, Starrett Elementary, Swift Elementary and Wood Elementary.

What if I borrowed a device (iPad or Chromebook) from the district and I cannot get it to work or I am having other issues with it?

Please put in a Student Tech Help Request for assistance. Our tech team will assist you with device issues.

I missed the noon deadline on March 31 to request a device, can I still receive a device?

We are managing distribution for the safety of our staff and the public picking up devices, so our Student Device Request link is currently closed. We will be reopening the form for another Device Day pickup soon. When we finalize the details, we will announce them via parent email, on the Coronavirus website and on our Facebook and Twitter accounts.

My student is really struggling and showing signs of anxiety over the closure, do you have someone my child can speak to or suggestions for how to talk to them about the coronavirus?

Yes – the Arlington ISD has a Coping With Emergencies page as a part of its COVID-19 response. We have a student counseling hotline set up where students can conference with a school counselor, and we have parent and student resources for managing stress and anxiety.

How do I get a verification of enrollment for my child to get his or her driver license?

As of March 18, all Texas DMV offices are closed to the public for in-person transactions and in order to get a license, students must visit the DMV in person for fingerprints, pictures and to turn in the VOE. The district will continue to work on ways to provide a VOE during our closure.

How do I get a transcript for my child?

Transcripts for current and former students are available through an online portal. Find information on ordering transcripts here.

What is the plan for graduation for our class of 2020 seniors?

Seniors and parents of seniors, we know this is a difficult time for you as you have prepared for graduation for many years. While we don’t know yet what type of graduation services we will have, we assure you that we will celebrate your milestone.

My child was scheduled to take the SAT/PSAT/ACT exam, is that canceled?

From the College Board website: In response to the rapidly evolving situation around the coronavirus (COVID-19), College Board is canceling the May 2, 2020 SAT administration. Makeup exams for the March 14 administration (scheduled for March 28) are also canceled.

Students who already registered for May, whose March test centers were closed, or who do not receive March scores because of any irregularities will receive refunds.

In the coming days, College Board will share additional information and details directly with registered students and test centers.

From the ACT website: The safety of students and test center staff is ACT’s top priority. ACT has rescheduled its April 4 national test date to June 13 across the U.S. in response to concerns about the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19). All students registered for the April 4 test date will receive an email from ACT in the next few days informing them of the postponement and instructions for free rescheduling to June 13 or a future national test date.

Am I allowed to use the playgrounds, tracks, and basketball or tennis courts on Arlington ISD campuses?

Following the lead of City of Arlington officials, the Arlington ISD will be closing all playgrounds and basketball and tennis courts on our Arlington ISD campuses until further notice. Our Arlington ISD tracks will remain open at this time, but only if users practice safe social distancing.

 

3/26/2020, 3 p.m.

Superintendent Dr. Marcelo Cavazos announced yesterday that the district will not be resuming classes on campus on April 6 as previously hoped. Online learning for credits will begin April 13. The following is from a letter sent to parents, students and staff.

Dear parents, students and staff,

There are many questions about when school will re-open so I wanted to share an update.

The Arlington ISD will not be resuming classes on our campuses on April 6. We do not know at this time when school will resume on our campuses. In the meantime, the At-Home Learning Hub is growing daily so that your children continue their learning. All courses will be uploaded and ready for credits on April 13, 2020.

The situation continues to be fluid, and we are following guidance from our city, county and state officials. When health officials determine that it is safe to resume school, we will reach out to you with a date.

Seniors and parents of seniors, we know this is a difficult time for you as you have prepared for graduation for many years. While we don’t know yet what type of graduation services we will have, we assure you that we will celebrate your milestone.

I promise to keep you updated as I know more. Thank you for your patience and your resolve as we navigate this challenge together.

Sincerely,

Dr. Marcelo Cavazos
Superintendent

 

3/19/2020, 6:30 p.m.

It was announced earlier today that the school closure will be extended through April 3. The following is from a news release from the district.

By order of Texas Governor Greg Abbott, Arlington ISD’s 78 schools/campuses will remain closed through April 3 in the wake of the spread of COVID-19.

“We appreciate the Governor extending the closure because safety is our No. 1 priority,” said Arlington ISD Superintendent Dr. Marcelo Cavazos. “While our goal has always been to educate our students and prepare them for their futures, there is a time and a place for that. The main goal now is finding the best way to flatten the curve and keeping all of our students and teachers away from schools helps accomplish that.”

Athletics, fine arts activities, clubs and organizations and all other gatherings will also be canceled through April 3.

While closing schools is a daunting task, the Arlington ISD is prepared. The district began a student meal program Monday that provides breakfast and lunch weekdays for students 18 and under at 23 locations as long as the closure lasts. There were more than 8,000 meals served Wednesday. The district also launched the At-Home Learning Hub, an online learning program to keep students engaged. The hub continues to expand. It already includes lessons for students in prekindergarten through 12th grade with more curriculum in the works.

While schools are closed, the district is operating with essential personnel who will remain on duty with a plan to work as remotely as possible.

 

3/18/2020, 3:30 p.m.

In an effort to help students stay connected to learning during the school closure, the district has launched an “At-Home Learning Hub” online portal. The following is from a news release from the district.

To help students’ minds stay actively engaged during the district’s closure due to COVID-19, the Arlington ISD is launching an At-Home Learning Hub for all prekindergarten through 12th-grade students.

Beginning Tuesday, March 17, students will have materials and resources available online that are age, grade-level and content-area appropriate. These resources are meant to reinforce learning that has already taken place in the classroom in core subjects – English/ language arts/reading, math, science and social studies. Additionally, given the district’s continued focus on literacy, a variety of e-book platforms will be available.

“Our academic services and technology divisions have been working around the clock to come up with a plan to ensure Arlington ISD students have the opportunity to continue to learn even while school is closed,” Arlington ISD Superintendent Dr. Marcelo Cavazos said. “This is a vast undertaking, and we’ve seen an all-in effort from our entire district to help our students. I am proud of our Arlington ISD staff and know our students will benefit greatly from their work.”

Through the At-Home Learning Hub, parents will be able to access these resources, which will be continuously updated. The district is planning for both immediate needs through the district’s closure until Friday, March 27, and also extended needs in the event that the district will need to close beyond March 27.

 

3/18/2020, 3:20 p.m.

Within days of the closing of all district schools, AISD had a plan to make sure all students would be fed during the school closure due to COVID-19. The following is from a news release from the district.

Beginning Monday, March 16, the Arlington ISD will operate 23 distribution locations to accommodate students who need meals. Each weekday during the closure children 18 years of age and younger will be provided one packaged lunch meal and one light breakfast meal for the following morning.

“We know these are extraordinary times for everyone,” Arlington ISD Superintendent Dr. Marcelo Cavazos said. “Making sure our students have healthy food options is vital to everyone involved. It is a tremendous undertaking, but it’s necessary as the well-being of our students has been and always will be our No. 1 concern.”

Student Meal Plan Information:

  • Meals can be picked up daily from 11 a.m. until 1 p.m. at every site
  • Children must be present to receive meals
  • Meals are packaged to take home as schools are closed
  • No student ID or other form of identification is required
  • Arlington ISD Food and Nutrition Service personnel will be distributing the meals.
  • One entrée will be offered for each meal. There will also be a non-meat option.
  • Menus will be posted online daily on the District’s Facebook page and the Arlington ISD Coronavirus website.

Here is the list of the 23 Arlington ISD student meal sites:

  • Dipert Career+Technical Center
  • Sam Houston High School
  • Ferguson Education Center
  • Bailey Junior High
  • Barnett Junior High
  • Boles Junior High
  • Nichols Junior. High
  • Ousley Junior High
  • Shackelford Junior High
  • Workman Junior High
  • Young Junior High
  • Crouch Elementary
  • Farrell Elementary
  • Knox Elementary
  • Larson Elementary
  • Miller Elementary
  • Pope Elementary
  • Sherrod Elementary
  • Short Elementary
  • Speer Elementary
  • Starrett Elementary
  • Swift Elementary
  • Wood Elementary

 

3/13/2020

Arlington ISD announced today the closing of all 78 schools and cancelation of all school activities until March 30 in an effort to prevent the possible spread of coronavirus. 

In a statement released by the district, Superintendent Dr. Marcelo Cavazos said, “We don’t decide to close schools very often but we’re in an unprecedented situation that requires us to take unprecedented actions.”

As word quickly spread online, many students’ were glad the district was taking preemptive measures.

“I honestly feel it’s right as of right now because we don’t need to risk any students catching any kind of virus or colds from one another,” Shamaria Pickett, junior, said. “We need to take all precautions because this virus is getting bad.”

Some students also took into consideration those who traveled over Spring Break and the time needed to determine if they contracted the virus or not.

“I think it makes sense to cancel school considering how many people travelled for spring break,” Corgan Bergstrom, junior, said. “The two weeks gives families enough time to figure out if they have symptoms.”

And some students saw this extended Spring Break as advantageous.

“Seeing as this is exam season, it will give students more time to study independently for their tests, rather than be distracted by the school work we normally have,” Jack Bartholomee, senior, said.

Regardless of their feelings, many students are concerned about what this means for the end of the year.

“It’s not that I don’t love school and don’t want to go back to school but I wanna (sic) get out of school as quick as possible,” Drake Stokes, senior, said.

The district has made no further decisions about school work during the next two weeks or what this two-week closure will mean for the end of the year but according to their statement they are working on a plan. This story is on-going and new developments will be reported as they come. Please go to www.aisd.net/coronavirus/ for the latest.