Reopening Seminole ISD

Seminole ISD is excited for the new school year.  All students will report back on August 13. We are thankful for a community that understands any challenges or changes in normal school routines that are being made with the safety of students and staff in mind. Thank you for your patience and understanding as we navigate these new circumstances.

The District is working to ensure a safe and productive learning environment for all.
The plan follows recommendations for school opening and operations provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Texas Education Agency, and state and local health officials. TEA Guidance used to develop the SISD plan can be found at SY 20-21 Attendance and Enrollment FAQ


Learning Option

Seminole ISD plans to reopen all campuses on August 13, 2020. It will offer a traditional In-Person instructional setting as well as a Distance Learning option. Distance Learning will not be the same type of virtual instruction provided during the 2020 Spring School Closure. The requirements for Distance Learning are significantly more demanding on a student's daily participation and completion of work at home, as compared to this past spring.

SISD is Offering 2 Choices for Students to Receive Instruction

Option 1

In-Person Instruction On-Campus

Option 2

Distance Learning from Home

Traditional Setting 

Virtual Learning Platform

  • Instruction provided on SISD campuses
  • Strict health protocols will be in place
  • 90% Daily Attendance Required
  • Eligible for extracurricular activities
  • Eligible to take all offered electives
  • Recommended as the most effective instructional setting for most students
  • Classes set up in Google Classroom
  • All learning will take place at home
  • Higher expectations of student performance than Spring 2020
  • 90% Daily Attendance Required
  • Will not participate in extracurricular activities
  • Students must stay in virtual learning format until the end of the grading period (six-weeks)
  • Supervision by an adult is strongly suggested
  • Limited number of electives available to take online
  • Classes set up in Google Classroom

Guidelines for 2020-21 School Year 

Registration:

All students will need to register for the 2020-2021 school year through the Seminole ISD PowerSchool website found at https://powerschool.seminoleisd.net/public/home.html. All students start school on August 13.

Registration Details for the 2020-21 School Year are as follows:


July 28-31

Online Registration for Returning Students  

 

July 30-31

Online Registration for Returning Students Needing Computer Access To Register Onsite

(Computers set up and will be available at their campus. Please contact the campus to schedule an appointment.)

REGISTRATION TIMES: 9:00 - 11:30 and 1:00 - 3:30


August 4-7

Registration for New Students

By Appointment Only

 

Please call the campus office to schedule an appointment if you are a returning student needing computer access or a new student to the district. 

 

 

Campus Grades Address Phone Number
High School 9 - 12 2100 NW Avenue D 758-5873
Junior High 6 - 8 600 NW Avenue J 758-9431
Elementary 4 - 5 401 SW Avenue B 758-3615
Primary 2 - 3 508 SW Avenue D 758-5841
F.J. Young PreK - 1 2100 SW Avenue B 758-3636
Success Center 6 - 12 206 SW 3rd 758-2772

**Please wear a mask if registering onsite**

Registration details can be found on the Seminole ISD Website at www.seminoleisd.net → Parents → Registration Information


Distance Learning from Home Considerations:

Distance Learning from Home (virtual school) is a fluid option that can be accessed at any time. Internet access will be necessary. The District will not be mailing out packets. It is important that students understand that Distance Learning attendance is based on daily engagement, not solely the completion of assignments. State law TEC §25.092 and Seminole ISD Policy still require students to attend at least 90% of their classes to receive credit and be promoted. High School AP and Honors Courses are available via Distance Learning. However, for these Distance Learning courses to be categorized as weighted courses, all exams and tests must be taken in a proctored environment at school and could require daily synchronous online instruction. If students are selecting Distance Learning and cannot commit to these AP/Honors requirements, the student will be placed in an applicable regular course. 

Once the virtual option is chosen, the student must remain with that option until the end of that six-week grading period. Parents must inform the campus of the student’s return to in-person attendance by the deadlines listed below. The form can be obtained from your campus.

Changing options frequently may have a negative impact on a student’s ability to receive credit for the course as well as their academic success.

Grading Period

Notification Deadline

Second

September 14, 2020

Third

October 20, 2020

Fourth

December 7, 2020

Fifth

February 8, 2021

Sixth

March 29, 2021


Extracurricular Considerations:


SISD students who choose to participate in extracurricular activities and certain CTE courses must choose the in-person option. These courses include:

All UIL activities

  • Athletics  
  • Cheerleading
  • Band
  • Choir
  • Academics
  • Art
  • Theatre

CTE Courses

  • Construction Trades
  • Welding
  • Designated Ag Sciences
  • Designated Health Sciences
  • Cosmetology
  • Designated Family Consumer Sciences
  • Automotive
  • Woodshop

 

Technology:


The district has procured devices for all staff and students. Information concerning technology use, fees, and distribution will be provided to parents by their child’s home campus. 


Instructional Efforts Underway for the New School Year

  • Developing instructional models that support both in-person and virtual learning through Google Classroom
  • Providing a laptop or iPad for all students in grades PreK-12
  • Working to continue to provide solutions for broadband internet for those students who do not have internet service at home
  • Teachers will utilize the same curriculum and grading policies in both the Distance Learning or In-Person options.
  • Teachers will plan instruction that is quickly and easily transferable from In-Person to Distance Learning in the event of temporary school closure due to COVID-19 spread.

 

Health/Safety Efforts Underway for the New School Year

  • Monitoring the potential impact of Coronavirus (COVID-19) in Gaines County and following guidance provided by local health organizations
  • Using a preventive, antimicrobial misting system at all facilities and on buses to thoroughly and widely disinfect daily. The District also disinfects locker rooms, weight rooms, and equipment cages.
  • Hand sanitizer stations located at all facility entrances
  • Hand sanitizer and disinfectant spray available for all classrooms
  • Students and staff will be expected to utilize the district’s self-care screening questionnaire daily. 
  • Face coverings are mandated by the Governor’s order (Executive Order GA 29). As a proven method to help slow the spread of COVID-19, SISD will support this measure. 
    • Students in grades 4-12 will have face-covering requirements. A choice by a student to refuse to wear a face-covering is a choice to enroll in Distance Learning. SISD will be purchasing clear face shields for all students and staff as an alternative for in-class instructional time. 
    • Students in 3rd grade and below will be highly encouraged to wear face coverings. These students should wear them in transition for the entrance and exit of the campus.
    • Students may choose to use a face-covering of their own, or one will be provided by the district.
    • Students will be required to utilize a face covering when in transit on a Seminole ISD Transportation Service.
  • Social distancing (6 feet or 2 arm’s length) enforced when possible
  • Limit the number of visitors to campuses and only by appointment
  • Per CDC guidance, student(s) must bring their own lunch in the morning, or eat food provided by the cafeteria. Visitors are not allowed to drop lunch off for student(s). 
  • Handwashing and/or hand sanitizing is required frequently throughout the day. Proper self-care habits will be taught.
  • Water Fountains will be closed; students are asked to bring their own water in a clear bottle. 

 

Return to School Protocols

Return to onsite work protocols for Seminole ISD campuses and administration buildings will be in place. Since this is an ever-changing situation, the district may need to change protocols at any time to address specific needs and circumstances in order to protect the health and safety of students, employees, and the community. Please note, health guidance cannot anticipate every unique situation. As a result, Seminole ISD will continue to consult available guidance through governmental agencies and other information deemed relevant to monitor the situation. The district will comply with applicable federal and state employment and disability laws, workplace safety standards and accessibility standards to address individual needs. It is important to remember the virus that causes COVID-19 can be spread by infected persons who have few or no symptoms. Even if an infected person shows no symptoms or is only mildly ill, the people they spread it to may become seriously or fatally ill, especially for persons 65 years of age or older with pre-existing health conditions placing them at higher risk. Because of the hidden nature of this threat, Seminole ISD expects all employees, students, and families to rigorously follow these practices.

Preparation for the Opening of School 

Seminole ISD will ensure all staff, resources and supplies are prepared for opening school, including but not limited to, assigning sufficient staff to carry out re-opening, ensuring proper training and stocking inventory of necessary supplies such as personal protective equipment (PPE). The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provides guidance, recommendations and resources to assist with plans and protocols for health and safety. Before schools re-open, Seminole ISD will implement health and safety plans that include: Ensuring adequate supply inventory, cleaning with products approved by governing authorities, and per guidelines, providing communication of procedures and expectations upon entering facilities and throughout buildings.

Protocols for Screening and Isolation

All students and staff should be screened for COVID-19 symptoms daily and individuals with symptoms will be separated and sent home. Screening protocols include: Staff will be required to complete a self-screening process prior to entering a Seminole ISD building, and the district may require further screening of employees at any time based on the current state and federal guidelines. A parent or guardian will be required to screen their children for COVID-19 symptoms each day prior to sending them to school. Parents will need to take their child’s temperature daily. Additional screening may be conducted during the school day. Parents must ensure they do not send a child to school on campus if the child has COVID-19 symptoms (as listed in this document) or is lab-confirmed with COVID-19, and instead should opt to receive remote instruction until the below conditions for re-entry are met.

Staff and students should not enter campuses or district buildings if any of the following apply. The individual is: Sick or has been sick in the past 14 days. Symptoms to watch for: Fever (over 100°F), cough, shortness of breath/difficulty breathing, chills, muscle pain, headache, sore throat, new loss of taste or smell, has a confirmed case of COVID-19, or has been in close contact with a person with a confirmed case of COVID-19, has a household member who is awaiting COVID-19 test results, or who is awaiting their own test results, or has traveled internationally or on a cruise in the past 14 days. These individuals must follow current CDC self-quarantine recommendations: View current CDC recommendations. Teachers will monitor students and refer them to the nurse if symptoms are present.


Isolation Protocols

For students displaying symptoms of COVID-19 or are feeling feverish, the school nurse will provide a clinical assessment to determine if and when a student needs to be sent home. 

Students who are ill will be separated from their peers and should be picked up within 30 minutes and no later than 1 hour from the time the campus has contacted the parent/guardian.

Other students will be removed from the classroom and taken to an alternate location on campus (go on a walk outside, move to a different classroom, etc) so that the classroom can be disinfected. If an individual who has been in a school is lab-confirmed to have COVID-19, the school must notify its local health officials, in accordance with applicable federal, state and local laws and regulations, including confidentiality requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).

Schools must close off areas that are heavily used by the individual with the lab-confirmed case (student, teacher, or staff) until the non-porous surfaces in those areas can be disinfected.

Staff members displaying COVID-19 symptoms will follow district protocols including isolation from students and other staff members.

Students and staff who have tested positive for COVID-19 will be permitted to return to school when:

  • They are 3 days (72 hours) fever-free without using fever-reducing medication
  • Improved symptoms (cough, difficulty breathing, etc.);
  • 10 days have passed since symptoms began.

Frequently Asked Questions

General Questions 

  • What precautions will be in place on campus?

We will implement increased signage around campuses promoting disease mitigation strategies, increased cleaning and sanitation practices, as well as frequent reminders of hand hygiene and social distancing. SISD will comply with all health and safety mandates established by health officials and Texas Education Agency. Classrooms will be arranged to maximize space between students.  The District is preparing to have a good supply of hand sanitizer, face shields, acrylic dividers, cleaning supplies and more. 

  • Will students and staff be required to wear masks?

Face coverings are mandated by the Governor’s order (Executive Order GA 29). SISD will be purchasing clear face shields for all students and staff as an alternative for in-class instructional time. A choice by a student to refuse to wear a face-covering is a choice to enroll in Distance Learning.  

  • Will CDC social distancing guidelines be observed?

All areas of the campus will be monitored frequently to encourage social distancing. Social distancing will be observed as much as possible, but at times students will be closer than the recommended 6 feet apart. When social distancing requirements cannot be maintained, such as class change times, lunch, etc. students will be required to wear face coverings as per Executive Order GA 29.

Signage reminding students and staff about handwashing, social distancing, and infection prevention will be posted throughout the school and in areas mentioned above.

  • What are the symptoms for COVID-19?
    Per the CDC, the symptoms may include cough, fever, chills, shortness of breath, muscle pain, sore throat, and/or loss of taste or smell. 
  • What happens if a student or a teacher tests positive for COVID-19? Will the entire classroom have to quarantine and enroll in virtual school? What if multiple classrooms and students/staff are impacted?

When notification of a possible exposure occurs, SISD, in coordination with local health authorities, will begin contact tracing and complete a thorough risk assessment. Based on this assessment, a determination as to whether an entire classroom or multiple classrooms are required to quarantine will be made. At this time, SISD plans to use the COVID-19 Standard Response Protocol located in Appendix 1 of this document. Students will have the opportunity to access virtual content during the quarantine period.  Students will be eligible to return to On-Campus learning at the end of their quarantine period.  

  • When will students need to quarantine?

Anyone that has had “close contact” with an individual who has been medically diagnosed with COVID-19, should quarantine for 14 days. 

  • What is considered “Close Contact”? 

For clarity, close contact is defined as: (A) being directly exposed to infectious secretions (e.g., being coughed on while not wearing a face covering); or (B) being within 6 feet for a cumulative duration of 15 minutes, while not wearing a face covering; if either occurred at any time in the last 14 days at the same time the infected individual was infectious.

  • Will visitors be allowed on campuses?

Visitors will be allowed on campuses on a very limited basis using the guidelines below.

  • Visits must be official school business and have a scheduled appointment
  • All visitors required to wear masks and utilize hand sanitizing stations upon entry
  • Parents will be required to drop off students at designated drop off locations
  • Students may bring lunch, but no drop-off or delivery of lunch allowed
  • No visitors will be allowed to eat with students 
  • Students in PK - 8th grade will not be allowed to leave campus for lunch
  • Until further notice, classroom parties will not be allowed

Parent/Student Related 

  • What if most families choose the in-person option? Would there have to be changes to accommodate social distancing or will there be a limit of how many students can select the in-person option?

We will continue to work closely with TEA and local health authorities to ensure the safety of our students. We believe we will be able to provide instruction to students in whichever format their families choose. Keep in mind, SISD will comply with all mandates regarding social/physical distancing, masks as well as health and hygiene protocols.

  • How will you address social, emotional, or mental health concerns?

Counselors are available to support students academically, socially, and emotionally and can provide mental health support or resources for families who may be struggling emotionally. If a student needs to schedule a counseling session, please contact the campus counselor. 

  • Will we still have open-house, assemblies, or concerts?

At this time, large events will occur in a virtual setting or in small in-person gatherings that comply with CDC guidelines.

  • Will buses run?

Yes, transportation will continue for eligible regular bus route students. Face coverings will be required to ensure the safety of all riders. Parents that have the ability to transport their children to school are requested to do so.  

  • Will social distancing be observed on buses, and how will seating arrangements be determined?

We cannot guarantee 6-foot social distancing on our district transportation. Consequently, students will be asked to wear face coverings. Students will be instructed with specific safety protocols. The bus driver and students will use hand sanitizer that will be provided. School buses will be cleaned and disinfected twice daily.

  • What precautions will be in place for athletics, fine arts, and other extracurricular activities?

Safety guidelines have been developed for conducting workouts, rehearsals, and practices. The district will continue to follow all mandated guidelines provided by UIL, TEA, and the state. On July 21, 2020, UIL provided new Operational Guidelines for events which include required screenings, 50% capacity, face coverings, sanitizing, social distancing and concessions.  

  • Will students have recess or the ability to play and socialize with other students?

We are awaiting guidance from the Texas Education Agency on recess activities. However, we anticipate elementary students will have recess time with restrictions that reinforce social distancing.

  • Will students remain enrolled at their school if they choose virtual school?

Yes, students will remain enrolled at their home school.

  • Will meals be provided for students who select distance learning?

Options are being explored for providing meals to qualified students who select virtual school. There are currently no state or federal regulations that allow districts to serve meals to students who are not present on campus, although guidelines are expected in the near future.

  • Are immunizations required for virtual school?

Yes. At this time the Texas Department of State Health Services has not waived the vaccine requirements for students.

  • How will distance learning be different from at-home learning during the closure last spring?

Students who select virtual school will be required to attend and participate in class daily. In the spring last year, students’ assignments were limited. Distance learning this year will be a full course load of instruction and assignments that is equivalent to what students who are attending school in-person will be required to complete. It will be the responsibility of the parent and student to ensure virtual learning meets the same expectations as in-person learning which includes completion of all assignments, daily communication with teacher and daily time commitment. Teachers delivering virtual instruction will receive additional training and support in digital teaching strategies and using online curriculum. 

  • Who will be required to take State assessments?

The Texas Education Agency has advised that students participating in both in-person and virtual learning will be required to participate in state (STAAR/EOC/TELPAS, etc.) testing.

  • Will packets be available for instruction if we do not have access to a device or internet?

No, packets will not be available as we move into the 2020-2021 school year.  

  • Can a student be counted absent from distance learning?

Yes. In the virtual learning instructional method, student engagement is measured daily, and attendance is assigned based on the student’s completion of that day’s engagement measure. Students who do not complete the daily measure of engagement are to be counted absent for that day, and that absence cannot be changed to present if the student completes the engagement measure on a later date. 

  • Under the virtual learning instructional method, if a student decides to complete the entire weeks’ worth of work on Monday, can the student’s attendance be coded to show perfect attendance for the week?

No. In the distance learning instructional method, student engagement is measured daily, and attendance is assigned based on the student’s completion of that day’s engagement measure. Students who do not complete the daily measure of engagement are to be counted absent for that day, and that absence cannot be changed to present if the student completes the engagement measure on a later date. In the example above, the student would be counted absent Tuesday-Friday.

  • Will the 90% minimum student attendance for class credit rule be in effect for the 2020– 2021 school year?

Yes. The minimum attendance for class credit rule of TEC, §25.092, will be in effect for the 2020–2021 school year, and TEA will not be issuing waivers for LEAs to exempt themselves from the rule. Students are required to attend at least 90% of their classes (with some exceptions) to receive credit and be promoted. Remote attendance will count in the same manner as on-campus attendance in satisfying this requirement.

  • Will truancy laws be in effect during the 2020–2021 school year for students receiving remote instruction due to COVID-19 related closure or health concerns?

Truancy laws will apply to students who fail to attend school either in-person or virtually.

Staff Related

  • Will teachers get to choose if they want a virtual or in-person schedule?

Staffing decisions will be determined based on student choice of instructional delivery. Principals, in cooperation with teachers, develop work assignments. If a teacher has safety concerns about returning to work on site, they should contact their principal. At this time, all staff will report to their applicable SISD facility to promote instruction for all students.

  • What will staff do if they have to quarantine due to COVID-19? Will the district provide extra sick or personal days for staff?

Requirements to quarantine are determined by the health officials. In addition to existing leave balances in effect for employees, Seminole ISD will follow all provisions of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) which is in effect through December 31, 2020.

  • As a staff member can I go to other campuses?

All guidelines listed above are in effect unless you are visiting a campus for school-related business.


Appendix: I       Seminole ISD

COVID-19 Standard Response Protocol

Risk Level 1

PREVENTION: No confirmed cases of COVID-19 among staff or students.

  • Health prevention measures are in place.
  • Daily intensive cleaning and frequent cleaning of facilities.
  • Limited visitor access.
  • Monitoring virus trends in the community via local health officials.
  • Communicate to employees and district community.
Risk Level 2

MITIGATION: One confirmed case(s) of COVID-19 in one specific area.

  • Person(s) with close contact of an individual with a confirmed case of COVID-19 will be advised to self-quarantine for 14 days.
  • Affected areas are closed until deep cleaning is complete.
  • Self-monitoring, preventative measures and staying home if ill.
  • Limited visitor access.
  • Communicate to employees and district community.
Risk Level 3

MODIFIED OPERATIONS: Three or more confirmed COVID-19 cases in one specific area.

  • Students and staff from that area will self-quarantine for 14 days.
  • Students impacted will move to remote learning.
  • Affected area will be closed until deep cleaning is complete.
  • Self-monitoring, preventative measures, and staying home if ill.
  • No visitor access.
  • Communicate to employees and district community.
Risk Level 4

FACILITY CLOSURE: COVID-19 cases exceed 10% of campus/facility occupancy.

    • Entire facility will be closed for a minimum of two days.
    • All students and staff may return if symptom free upon determination by school and health officials.
    • Those infected or in close contact with infection will be asked to self-quarantine for 14 days per CDC guidelines.
    • No visitor access.
  • Communicate to employees and district community.
Risk Level 5

DISTRICT CLOSURE: COVID-19 cases exceed 10% of occupancy within the District’s facilities.

  • All SISD facilities closed for a minimum of 5 days.
  • Students and staff will move to remote learning and work.
  • Disinfection of all facilities and school buses.
  • All properties (playground, gym, athletic facilities, etc.) are closed.
  • All extracurricular activities, events, trips, contests put on hold.
  • Communicate to employees and district community