School closures and more Central Texas coronavirus news

New Braunfels ISD and Comal ISD will be closed through the rest of the 2019-2020 school year. (Courtesy Fotolia)
New Braunfels ISD and Comal ISD will be closed through the rest of the 2019-2020 school year. (Courtesy Fotolia)

New Braunfels ISD and Comal ISD will be closed through the rest of the 2019-2020 school year. (Courtesy Fotolia)

Read the latest updates from the past week of coverage in the Central Texas area.

Governor Abbott closes all Texas schools through the remainder of the semester

In a press conference April 17, Gov. Greg Abbott announced that all schools will remain closed through the end of the school year.

Georgetown ISD special education teachers face unique challenges with distance learning

In a job that already requires individualized attention and detail, Georgetown ISD special education teachers are doing their best to make accommodations for students as they continue to learn virtually.

On March 31, GISD announced schools would be closed through at least May 1, and all graded school work would begin April 6. But for students who learn differently, the change can be extra daunting for educators.

St. Edward’s University cuts six varsity athletic programs

The St. Edward’s University varsity men’s and women’s tennis, men’s and women’s golf, men’s soccer and co-ed cheer teams will be discontinued after the spring semester as the university deals with the financial challenges caused by the coronavirus, according to an April 15 media release.

Here’s a breakdown of 4 financial relief programs aimed to save small Texas businesses

The state’s Office of the Governor hosted a webinar on April 15 highlighting four loan services available through the Small Business Association for business owners who may be financially struggling as a result of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

Williamson County commissioners consider not adding new positions as budget season approaches

Williamson County commissioners Cynthia Long and Valerie Covey said the county will likely not add any new positions fiscal year 2020-21 as the county moves forward with budget discussions for during an April 14 meeting.

Travis County institutes hiring freeze amid considerations to mitigate budget impacts from coronavirus

The Travis County Commissioners Court voted April 14 to institute a hiring freeze for most jobs under the umbrella of Travis County government in an effort to mitigate the financial hit of the coronavirus—which is projected by county staff to be at least $25.7 million in the current fiscal year.

Travis County health officials: Face masks need to become part of culture to reopen society

Wearing cloth face coverings over the nose and mouth when performing most activities away from home has evolved from a recommendation into a legal obligation under new coronavirus mitigation orders issues by Austin-Travis County officials on April 13.

Escott: Central Texas officials to provide racial, ethnic breakdown of coronavirus hospitalizations, deaths by end of week

Austin and Travis County health officials are not sharing race or ethnicity information with the public when it comes to hospitalizations and deaths, but Austin-Travis County interim Health Authority Dr. Mark Escott said he expects those statistics to be available by the end of the week.

2,000 in-home test kits raise concerns in Hays County

Hays County Judge Ruben Becerra announced during a recent Commissioners Court meeting that 2,000 in-home test kits for COVID-19 would be available for county residents, but no in-home testing kits have been approved by the U.S Food and Drug Administration.

Kalahari on track for November opening in Round Rock despite coronavirus pandemic, contractors say

Kalahari Resorts & Conventions is on schedule for a November opening in Round Rock despite the coronavirus pandemic, according to general contractors Hensel Phelps.

Ali Linan, Jack Flagler, Adriana Rezal, Olivia Aldridge, Christopher Neely, Warren Brown, Evelin Garcia and Taylor Jackson Buchanan contributed to this report.


Early voting for Travis County's May 1 local elections opened April 19. In this file photo, voters line up ahead of the 2020 primary elections at Millennium Youth Entertainment Complex in East Austin. (Jack Flagler/Community Impact Newspaper)
More than 8,000 Travis County voters cast ballots on first day of early voting

Early voting for the county's May 1 election began April 19 and will run through April 27.

The Delco Activity Center in Northeast Austin is one of the locations where residents can receive a COVID-19 vaccine. (Jack Flalger/Community Impact Newspaper)
Austin vaccine updates: Demand slows as state begins marketing push

Appointments are beginning to go unfilled, and local health officials say demand has caught up to supply. All adults in the U.S. are now eligible to be vaccinated.

Blue Corn Harvest Leander is located at 11840 Hero Way W., Bldg. A, Leander. (Taylor Girtman/Community Impact Newspaper)
Blue Corn Harvest opens in Leander; park, pizzeria launches social club and more Central Texas news

Read the latest business and community news from the Central Texas area.

Photo of two performers on an outdoor SXSW stage
South by Southwest sells ownership stake in company to Rolling Stone owner Penske Media Corp.

SXSW leadership called the sale a "lifeline" for the conference and festivals.

Photo of people receiving vaccines in a gym
Austin Public Health lengthens windows for vaccine appointment signups

Residents age 18 and up can now sign up for appointments with APH any time from Saturday to Tuesday morning.

Austin Anthem watch party
Crowds of fans converge on North Austin to watch inaugural Austin FC game

Breweries around Q2 Stadium in North Austin brought in large outdoor screens and new employees to host fans of Austin FC for the team's historic first match.

Austin Police Department
UPDATE: Loop 360 closed in both directions in Northwest Austin due to a shooting incident

Residents who live in the Arboretum area in Northwest Austin are advised to shelter in place.

Early voting for the May 1 election opens April 19 at a 7 a.m. (Jack Flagler/Community Impact Newspaper)
Early voting in Austin opens April 19: See what’s on the ballot, where to vote

City residents will be making decisions on eight propositions ranging from whether to adopt a strong mayor government system to whether to reinstate public camping bans.

Austin transportation officials said April 15 the range of corridor construction program projects initiated through the city's 2016 Mobility Bond remain on track for completion by late 2024. (Iain Oldman/Community Impact Newspaper)
Several Austin corridor mobility projects moving forward in 2021, program on track for 2024 completion

Transportation officials said some corridor program improvements previously planned along Guadalupe Street and East Riverside Drive are being reduced ahead of Project Connect expansions.

Jack Allen's Kitchen will be at 1345 E. Whitestone Blvd., Cedar Park. (Rendering courtesy Jack Allen's Kitchen)
7 restaurants coming to Cedar Park, Leander; new murals to go up in Georgetown and more top area news

Read the top business and community news from the Central Texas area from the past week.

The program, which began this week in San Marcos, gives Amazon and Whole Foods employees and contractors direct access to COVID-19 vaccinations. (Courtesy Amazon)
Amazon begins rollout of statewide vaccination clinics for employees

The program, which began this week in San Marcos, gives Amazon and Whole Foods employees and contractors direct access to COVID-19 vaccinations.

Photo of a home for sale
Central Austin housing market remains steep as area median home price reaches all-time high

Home prices in the Austin-Round Rock area have climbed more than 28% in the past year.