More than 32,700 students in Spring, Klein and Cy-Fair ISDs switch to on-campus learning for second grading period

As coronavirus cases continue to rise among teachers and students, Spring, Klein and Cy-Fair ISDs have reported that an 32,783 more students are learning in person during the second grading period than were on campus at the start of the 2020-21 school year. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
As coronavirus cases continue to rise among teachers and students, Spring, Klein and Cy-Fair ISDs have reported that an 32,783 more students are learning in person during the second grading period than were on campus at the start of the 2020-21 school year. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)

As coronavirus cases continue to rise among teachers and students, Spring, Klein and Cy-Fair ISDs have reported that an 32,783 more students are learning in person during the second grading period than were on campus at the start of the 2020-21 school year. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)

As coronavirus cases continue to rise among teachers and students, Spring, Klein and Cy-Fair ISDs have reported that 32,783 more students are learning in person during the second grading period than were on campus at the start of the 2020-21 school year.

According to KISD data, 51.94% of the student population, or 27,134 students, was enrolled in on-campus learning for the first quarter of the school year, while 48.06%, or 25,104 students, participated remotely. For the second quarter of the 2020-21 school year—which runs Nov. 2, 2020-Jan. 15, 2021—7,007 more students are learning on campus.

Similarly, in SISD, 34% of students opted for the district's on-campus learning option at the start of the 2020-21 school year, but 55.6% of students are learning on campus as of Nov. 23. Based on a total student enrollment of 33,715, this equates to 7,276 more students on campus now than were on campus at the start of the school year.

Additionally, as previously reported by Community Impact Newspaper, 55% of CFISD's 115,923 students participated in remote learning at the start of the school year. At the start of the second grading period—Oct. 19 for secondary students and Nov. 9 for elementary students—more than 18,500 students switched to on-campus learning.

Since classes began Aug. 17, 216 SISD students and staff members have tested positive for COVID-19, according to data as of Nov. 23.


In CFISD, 577 students and staff members have tested positive since Sept. 8.

KISD reported 86 active student and staff member cases of coronavirus as of Nov. 23. The district reports an overall COVID-19 positivity rate of 0.24% for KISD campus staff and 0.2% for on-campus students.

Staying flexible

To keep up with these trends as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to evolve, each of the three districts has made changes throughout the 2020-21 school year.

KISD Chief Academic Officer Amy Miller said district officials are continuing to follow the guidelines the district's Roadmap to Reopening Design Team developed over the summer to assist schools in handling and mitigating possible COVID-19 scenarios.

"Included in those playbooks were plans for bringing back a majority of our students to on-campus learning," Miller said in an email Nov. 10. "As more families choose to return to on-campus learning, our campus administrators use our playbooks to maintain a focus on safe operations and adjust their campus procedures accordingly to accommodate safely the increase in students on campus."

Miller said the district is not currently seeing any statistically significant correlation between the number of positive cases of COVID-19 and campuses with high numbers of on-campus learners.

"Schools currently without a single active COVID-19 case range from 45%-84% on-campus student enrollment," Miller said.

During the Nov. 10 SISD board meeting, SISD Chief of Police Ken Culbreath presented an update on how the district is handling the ongoing pandemic. According to Culbreath, the district has implemented Stop the Spread Safety Walks, in which emergency management teams partner with campus leaders to ensure they have the resources and systems in place to keep students and staff members safe; partnered with a medical provider to assist the district with its check-in-to-work process for employees; and established isolation rooms on each campus where COVID-19-positive individuals are placed until they can be transitioned to a medical facility or go home.

"[Harris County Public Health] visited the district two weeks ago to see our processes and watch how we were doing our contact tracing and just kind of evaluate our processes," Culbreath said during the meeting. "The epidemiologist nurse that was here gave us a thumbs-up and said that we were on par with their standards, and in some areas, we even exceeded here in the district, so we were really proud of that."

Culbreath said SISD also has a 24-hour COVID-19 contact tracing team and has partnered with a second outside medical provider to provide free testing for employees who may have been exposed to COVID-19.

"We're not seeing spread across our campuses," SISD Superintendent Rodney Watson said during the meeting. "We're seeing individuals or singleton cases to where individuals, based upon what they did on the weekend or in their own private time, come to work or report to us that they've tested positive. So the team is doing a good job in terms of making sure that protocols are being followed."

SISD also updated its COVID-19 dashboard Nov. 20 to provide more detailed information for parents, students and staff.

In CFISD, officials announced Oct. 19 seven designated remote learning days for all students to provide teachers with additional planning time throughout the remainder of the 2020-21 school year, Community Impact Newspaper previously reported.

“We have determined that one area in need of immediate attention is additional planning and preparation time for our classroom teachers,” a statement posted on the district’s website read. “CFISD teachers are committed to providing quality instruction for their students and are working harder than ever to teach students both in-person and remotely.”

During these designated days, students who are otherwise attending face-to-face classes on their campuses will not need devices to complete and turn in assignments because they will receive paper packets ahead of time. Attendance will be recorded based on their completion of assignments, according to the district.

Those already participating in the district’s remote learning program, CFISD Connect, will watch prerecorded lessons and complete assignments virtually. Attendance will be recorded based on their completion of assignments and/or their login to Schoology.

There will be no live instruction on these days, and there will be no check-ins from teachers.

“We appreciate everyone’s patience as we continue to make changes that we believe will have a positive impact on both our students and staff,” CFISD officials said in the statement. “Please contact your campus directly if there is a need to request on-campus learning at school for a student in pre-K through 8th grade on these designated remote learning days from home.”

Danica Lloyd contributed to this report.
By Hannah Zedaker
Born and raised in Cypress, Texas, Hannah Zedaker graduated from Sam Houston State University in 2016 with a bachelor's degree in mass communication and a minor in political science. She began as an intern with Community Impact Newspaper in 2015 and was hired upon graduation as a reporter for The Woodlands edition in May 2016. In January 2019, she was promoted to serve as the editor of the Spring/Klein edition where she covers Spring ISD and Harris County Commissioners Court, in addition to business, development and transportation news.


MOST RECENT

Cy-Fair ISD recently added 266 propane buses to its total fleet. Funded by the 2019 bond package, the buses account for approximately 30% of the district’s total fleet and provide cleaner emissions. (Courtesy Cy-Fair ISD)
Cy-Fair ISD's 2019 bond program funds new propane buses to replace diesel vehicles

Propane buses now account for about 30% of the district's entire fleet.

ExxonMobil moved employees from its Springwoods Village campus to a Hughes Landing to cure a default on a Montgomery County tax abatement. (Courtesy ExxonMobil)
ExxonMobil resolves tax abatement default; Home Depot distribution center taking over superfund site; and more top Houston-area news

Read the most popular business and community news from the past week from the Houston area.

The University of St. Thomas is a private Catholic college in Houston. It also has a microcampus in downtown Conroe. (Emma Whalen/Community Impact Newspaper)
University of St. Thomas offering free tuition to first 500 students who apply

The online degrees are in the following fields: cybersecurity, network technology, electronic technology, general business, and alcohol and drug dependency counseling.

Harris County Emergency Services District No. 11 has begun construction on the first of three phases for its new 43-acre, state-of-the-art campus located in Spring, according to a May 7 news release. (Courtesy Cypress Creek EMS)
Harris County Emergency Services District No. 11 begins construction on new 43-acre campus

The campus will house ESD No. 11's new ambulance service, which is scheduled to launch Sept. 4 when the district's contract with current service provider, Cypress Creek Emergency Medical Services, expires.

The Texas Department of State Health Services projects a significant shortage of nurses by 2032. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Q&A: Why Texas faces a growing nursing shortage and what can be done to address it

In 2018, the state health department estimated about 11% of the demand for nurses was not able to be met, and that number is expected to rise to 16.3% by 2032.

Evolve Alchemy moved less than a mile from its former location on FM 2920 and opened in a new, larger space at 3624 FM 2920, Ste. 1, Spring, on May 5. (Courtesy Evolve Alchemy)
Evolve Alchemy moves to larger space on FM 2920 in Spring

The business sells intention and herbal candles, crystals and stones, incense, jewelry, smudge and other items used in meditation practice and energy work.

The practice is led by Stoni Johnston, who is a licensed and board certified psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner. (Courtesy Sulcata Psychiatry)
Sulcata Psychiatry in Vintage Park now scheduling appointments for June

Patients who schedule appointments for June prior to May 31 will receive a 15% discount.

POPPS opened in its new, larger location in Old Town Spring at 216 Midway St., Spring, on April 29. (Courtesy POPPS)
Gourmet popcorn shop POPPS moves to larger space in Old Town Spring

The self-proclaimed "Purveyors of Perfect Popcorn" boast more than 30 varieties of small-batch, artisan popcorn with flavors ranging from dill pickle and barbecue bacon to caramel pecan and cinnamon red hot.

HTV
Houston, Harris County annual addresses no longer hosted by Greater Houston Partnership over Texas voter bill dispute

Local leaders criticized the area chamber of commerce for not taking a definitive stance on two voting access bills currently being deliberated in the Texas Legislature.

The new location is Chipotle's first in Magnolia. (Courtesy Chipotle Mexican Grill)
Chipotle opens in Magnolia; get a sneak peek of new Houston aquarium and more metro news

Read the latest business and community news from the Houston area.

The business specializes in customized in-home consultations during which families will receive a fire safety plan specific to their house's floor plan and an age-appropriate, individualized plan for each family member. (Courtesy Fire Smart, LLC)
Fire Smart, LLC celebrates one year of providing fire safety education across Greater Houston area

The business specializes in customized in-home consultations during which families will receive a fire safety plan specific to their house's floor plan and an age-appropriate, individualized plan for each family member.