Digital Exclusive: ECISD discusses TEA guidance

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ODESSA, Texas (YourBasin) – With the Texas Education Agency releasing guidelines to reopen schools ECISD is relentlessly working to open schools in the fall safely with the guidelines.

“Not necessarily directives but these are things that schools should consider or should do,” says ECISD Superintendent Doctor Scott Muri. “There were a few things we are required to do such as we are required to follow all of the governor’s executive orders.”

The district currently has 18 committees to help plan reopening schools. Each committee received a copy of the guidance from the school to help aid in their decisions moving forward.

A part of those ‘shoulds’ was following the CDC guidelines, such as screening students and visitors before allowing them to enter the campus.

In addition, TEA is allowing parents to chose whether their child will attend in person or virtual classes.

“One of the pieces of guidance yesterday was more than just a ‘should’ it was a ‘shall’,” says Muri.

And speaking of parents, ECISD has released a survey asking for parent input on the upcoming school year. The big question, will you desire to send your child to school or do you wish to keep your child at home for instruction.

“The answer to that question is very important to us as we make plans for the upcoming year,” says Muri.

Muri states the school district serves 34,000 students. He also cites that state data indicates about 30% to 35% of parents may keep their children home.

Muri affirms that feedback is necessary for the district so they can serve students virtually.

STAAR test is also on the minds of students as the assessment test is set to be in place for the upcoming year.

Muri says things could change but as of now the district will be offering the assessment online instead of in person.

He ensures that the district continues to make it a safe environment mentally and medically for students. Face coverings, social distancing, and hand washing will be enforce but Muri states they will also be checking in on students mental health early in the school year.

The school has been working close with TEA on guidelines in reopening. Muri states it was no surprise seeing what TEA release.

“The guidance did not cause us to stop anything and regroup. It really supported the work that we are doing and allow us to create a healthy school year,” says Muri.

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