FAQ - District Response to Returning to School
FAQ- District Response for Returning to School *******Updated 11/4/2020
Athletics and Activities
Will students selecting the remote learning option to be able to participate in athletics and other UIL activities?
GISD students who are learning remotely will not be allowed to participate in UIL or extracurricular activities.
Will there be any changes to the 2020-2021 student and/or staff calendar?
It is a possibility that the calendar will need to be adjusted to meet state requirements.
Change in Conditions
If the health conditions worsen, how will things change?
Students may have to move from in-person learning to remote learning at some point in the year if health data and recommendations from local and state authorities necessitate closing an individual school or the entire district to in-person learning.
If there is a diagnosis of COVID-19 in a school building, what will happen?
The response to an individual case will depend largely on the circumstances surrounding the case and contact(s) the individual had within the school setting. GISD administrators have developed a plan to limit the possible exposure which includes scanning temperatures, having everyone wear a mask or face shield, and limiting unnecessary movement between classes.
How many students will be in a classroom in the fall in the in-person model?
Since our students and staff will be wearing masks or shields, we are not currently limiting the size of classes. At GISD, we have smaller than average class sizes and expect our class size to remain about the same as it has been in the past.
Will the online curriculum be the same as the in-person curriculum?
Yes, It is expected that all students enrolled in the same grade level/course will learn the same learning standards and objectives. There will be learning tasks that take different forms due to students learning in a variety of settings: in-person, remote-synchronous, or remote-asynchronous but the expected outcome will be the same.
Will students have to change elective course selections?
We will do our best to honor student course requests, there may be circumstances where it is not possible to offer a student a specific elective course based on the teacher availability in a remote or face-to-face setting.
Will AP and honors courses be offered remotely?
We intend to offer all AP and honor classes remotely.
Face to Face / Distance Learning Environments
What are the options for parents if they do not want their child to return to a building this fall?
Parents have the option of enrolling their child in remote learning. Under the remote learning plan, there are two instructional methods available, synchronous and asynchronous.
Some course offerings for remote learning may be limited and GISD cannot guarantee the availability of all programs.
Asynchronous learning is available as a remote learning option for all GISD students PK-12. In this model, students lead their learning and receive structured support from a teacher each day. If a student does not complete the required assignments or attend live instructional meetings each day, the student will be marked as absent and not receive attendance credit for the school day. Math and ELAR/Reading classes will be scheduled for direct-remote instruction daily.
Synchronous remote learning is an option available to all students in grades 3-12. In this model, students attend school daily, remotely online during regular school times. These students will watch live core subject instruction from his/her teacher and will be expected to interact while learning each day. Some elective classes may be offered
Will families have the option of changing their child’s placement from face-to-face to remote or vice versa at any point during the year?
Parents can choose to switch to remote online learning at any time. There are limits to when a student can return to face-to-face learning due to logistical planning. Parents need to choose one of these options to start the school year. Two weeks after instruction begins, a parent has the option of changing the method of learning. If a remote learner chooses to return to face-to-face instruction, he or she will be allowed back at the end of each six-week grading period.
How will distance learning be different in the 20-21 school year when compared to what was offered in the spring of 2020?
If a parent elects to have their child enrolled in remote learning or health circumstances require a school or schools to convert to distance learning during the school year, the experience for students will look different than it did during the spring of 2020.
The major changes for 2020-2021 include more time in synchronous (simultaneous) learning, online attendance, and regular grading of assignments and assessments. Simply stated, it is extremely structured.
How should parents notify their child’s school if they want to attend face-to-face or remote learning?
All parents will be asked to submit an online survey located on the district website to indicate their desire for their child to participate in the face-to-face or remote online program by July 29, 2020. If the intent form is not returned, the student will be automatically be enrolled for face-to-face instruction to start the school year.
What platform will be used to provide distance learning and will schools/teachers have a choice in what they use?
Teachers will use Schoology as their Learning Management System and may choose to integrate Google within that system. Face-to-face learning will also use Schoology as an LMS as a way to submit assignments and for teacher announcements. This is being done so learning will continue seamlessly should face-to-face learning be suspended for any reason.
Where will students be eating meals?
Food and Nutrition Services will provide breakfast and lunch at each of the three campuses. Principals are currently completing plans on serving students at each specific campus, but eating in classes, in the cafeteria with shields on, and separated with distance are all options available at this time.
Is off-campus lunch still allowed for Junior and Senior students?
Yes, these students are allowed to leave for lunch as long as they leave and arrive wearing their mask or shield between the campus and a vehicle.
Health, Safety, and Mental Health
What measures are being put into place to protect student and staff health and safety?
To name a few: GISD has hired additional custodial staff, cleaning supplies, and equipment. We are developing a health safety plan that will include the local/state health department. We are limiting school-wide exposure and will ensure all campuses take temperatures of those entering and require a mask or shield on all people within the facilities.
Cleaning and disinfecting procedures will be intensified. There will be daily sanitizing of high touch areas (doorknobs, handles, fixtures, etc.) with a medical-grade sanitizing solution. In addition, there will be more frequent monitoring and cleaning of restrooms throughout the day. Additional breaks will be provided for handwashing to ensure students wash their hands for at least 20 seconds after blowing their nose, coughing, or sneezing; before eating; and upon entering classrooms. If soap and water are not readily available, sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol will be provided.
We will limit building access, including, restricted building access for visitors.
The above list is not comprehensive and we are continually adding more measures to ensure the safety and wellbeing of all GISD students and staff.
Will there be temperature checks for students before they get on the bus and for students each day?
Yes, the students will be required to have a temperature taken when arriving at the bus, or at school if not a bus rider. If a student has a temperature of 100 or more, the student will be sent home and not allowed to be allowed to return to school until a negative COVID-19 test is submitted or 10 days have passed for quarantine.
Under what circumstances would a student or staff member be required to quarantine at home due to exposure to COVID-19?
Staff or students who may have been in contact with a COVID-19 positive individual must quarantine for 10 days or have a confirmed negative COVID-19 test.