COVID-19 Update (March 13, 2020)
Thank you for your patience as we work through the ever-changing landscape regarding the COVID-19 pandemic. As you are probably aware, Governor Abbott declared a statewide emergency in all Texas counties, and President Trump declared the coronavirus a national emergency this afternoon. A number of public school districts in Texas are announcing school closures to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. UIL announced moments ago that all UIL activities are suspended until March 29th. After collaborating with state and county health officials and other education leaders throughout the day, Superintendent John O’Brien announced that Van Vleck ISD will be closed March 16th-20th, along with the cancellation of all extracurricular activities. We will reevaluate our situation by the end of the day, Friday, March 20, 2020.
The health and safety of our students and staff is a top priority. The goals of this announced closure are to help prevent the spread of disease and to give our staff additional time to plan for continuity of services should it become necessary for public schools to close for a longer period of time. We ask each of you to continue doing your part to help prevent the spread of disease by limiting your attendance at social gatherings and large public events. Wash your hands regularly and isolate yourself if you begin experiencing symptoms like fever, coughing, or shortness of breath.
Additional information can be found below:
Centers for Disease Control https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html
Department of Student Health Services https://www.dshs.texas.gov/
The cancellation of mass gathering events can dramatically help flatten the epidemic curve for the spread of the coronavirus disease.
We acknowledge that an unexpected school closure creates a hardship on our parents and staff because of work, childcare, and other considerations. But we hope you know our efforts coming to this decision have been done with the best interests of everyone involved.
Van Vleck ISD employees need to be available to work when requested during this extended closure period. We will communicate directly with staff members regarding their specific roles and responsibilities in our prevention planning.
Per conference call this afternoon with Commissioner of Education Morath, more information is still to come from the Texas Education Agency, which will include guidance for course credit, compulsory attendance, accountability standards, and school funding. The Superintendent and district leaders in Van Vleck ISD eagerly await guidance on the waiver process and other steps to support the continued education of our students for the rest of the 2019-2020 school year.
Again, thank you for your patience as we navigate this changing situation. We will continue to be transparent and keep you updated.