Winter storm damage could prevent 10 Austin ISD campuses from reopening next week

Austin ISD students are scheduled to return to classrooms March 1 for the first time since Winter Storm Uri. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Austin ISD students are scheduled to return to classrooms March 1 for the first time since Winter Storm Uri. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)

Austin ISD students are scheduled to return to classrooms March 1 for the first time since Winter Storm Uri. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)

Austin ISD is still assessing the damage caused by recent winter weather at its schools and has identified 10 campuses of focus that may not be able to reopen to students by March 1.

Superintendent Stephanie Elizalde said the district has boots on the ground and is working to dry out campuses that have suffered leaks and other damage.


“If we can get enough of the fans and air blowers in there, we will be in good shape to have students welcome back in a safe classroom on Monday,” she said at a Feb. 25 board of trustees meeting. “If it is not a safe environment, we will not be bringing students back to those buildings.”

The 10 campuses of focus are as follows.

  • Clayton Elementary School

  • Covington Middle School

  • Galindo Elementary School

  • Kealing Middle School

  • Martin Middle School

  • Palm Elementary School

  • Pickle Elementary School

  • Sadler Means Young Women's Leadership Academy

  • Widen Elementary School

  • Clifton Career Development School


After classes in AISD were cancelled from Feb. 12-23, AISD students returned to fully virtual learning Feb. 24. Students will observe a virtual, asynchronous day again Feb. 26 before being allowed to return to campuses March 1 for regular operations.

If one or more of the 10 focus schools cannot reopen safely March 1, Elizalde said, the district could relocate some in-person learners and teachers to neighboring schools temporarily. She said she hopes the district can update the community on the status of each school before the weekend.
By Nicholas Cicale
Nick has been with Community Impact Newspaper since 2016, working with the Lake Travis-Westlake and Southwest Austin-Dripping Springs editions. He previously worked as a reporter in Minnesota and earned a degree from Florida State University.


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