SAN ANGELO, Texas — The 2019-2020 school year might not be over just yet, but because COVID-19 cases are still on the rise in Texas, the San Angelo Independent School District is already trying to prepare for the fall semester.
"You're planning for what you don't know, but what we do know is that we're going to have to be very fluid and very flexible and very adaptable," George McFarland, SAISD assistant superintendent of business and support services, said.
The district is currently considering three reopening strategies, according to McFarland: (1) a traditional, in-person opening; (2) a remote, online opening; or (3) a blended opening.
"Typically what the blended learning looks like is having time where you're at school, and having time where you're away from school. It's kind of a mixed bag there, if you will," McFarland said.
If the district moves ahead with a traditional or blended opening, McFarland said they will have 'micro-closures' plans in place.
"Let's say, at a campus level, you have a student that has a case come up. What we'd look at as a district is a micro-closure for that campus where, everybody would notified, and you'd probably close that campus for 3-5 days, probably 5. You would get additional sanitation cleaning and be able to go completely remote at that point in time for that micro-closure - that five day period - and then open up that next week of school," McFarland said.
Plans are far from being finalized, McFarland said, however the district is planning and hoping for an in-person opening by the time August rolls around. All decisions will be based off evidence and advice from local, state health officials, as well as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), according to McFarland.