KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
April 17, 2020
By Jennifer Miko
Today, Governor Greg Abbott announced that all public schools in the state would not reopen for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year. Classes will still be in session, but from home, as families practice social distancing in an effort to lower the curve of the coronavirus.
"We’re now beginning to see glimmers that the worst of COVID-19 may soon be behind us," said Governor Greg Abbott.
In this afternoon's press conference the governor outlined Executive Orders and a timeline for reopening businesses and parks, allowing medical procedures that had been delayed due to the virus, and measures for retail stores to operate with pick-up-only services.
"Schools will remain closed for the remainder of the school year," Governor Abbott said.
At this time, Katy ISD has not shared an announcement with District families and students about the Governor's decision.
Families in the district must continue to adjust their lives at home as their students stay home and finish the school year online.
"Honestly it will be hard for working families to juggle both work and family," says Kerri Schultz, a Katy mom of three and a realtor for Keller Williams. "But I do feel it’s an essential thing to do." Kerri's husband, Brent works for Kindermorgan.
"I feel it is the right decision," says Leigh Ishee, a Katy mom. "I think it is best for the safety and health of our children, teachers, administrators and all their families. I would love for the schools to open back up but it is not the right time. Hopefully they will be able to open back up in August."
On Tuesday, Superintendent Dr. Charles Dupre announced that Fort Bend ISD will continue online classes through the remainder of the 2019-20 school year, and commencement exercises for the Class of 2020 will be postponed until July.
Currently, Katy ISD has commencement ceremonies scheduled for May. In a statement to families and students from the Class of 2020 released last week, the District rescheduled individual high school proms until June, and announced they would be held at the Merrell Center.
What Led to This Decision?
February 26, 2020
Katy ISD sent out a communication to families and staff regarding the coronavirus: “The District is working closely with the CDC and local health officials to monitor any development. At this time, there are no confirmed cases in our schools or counties in which Katy ISD is situated.”
Over the next few weeks, news reports increased about the spread of the coronavirus.
March 12, 2020
Katy ISD postponed the return from spring break one week from March 16 to March 23. In addition, all campus events, field trips, student trips and UIL practices/competitions were postponed effective Friday, March 13, to last throughout the closure.
March 13, 2020
Governor Abbott declared a State of Disaster for Texas.
March 16, 2020
Governor Abbott waived STAAR requirements for this year, and the Texas Education Agency (TEA) posted a letter regarding cancellation of STAAR testing.
The CDC asked schools to remain closed for four weeks to mitigate the spread of the virus. Katy ISD released the following statement:
“With the COVID-19 situation evolving daily and the reported cases in the Greater Houston area gradually increasing, Katy ISD will be postponing the opening of its schools until at least Monday, April 13.”
March 24, 2020
Harris and Fort Bend counties issued “Stay Home” orders beginning at midnight March 24 through April 3. Katy ISD closed its facilities and restricted access to essential staff only.
March 31, 2020
Governor Abbott extended his Executive Order extending social distancing guidelines until April 30. He also directed schools to remain closed until May 4.
April 16, 2020
The Texas American Federation of Teachers (ATF) asked Governor Abbott to continue to officially close all Texas public schools to in-person instruction for the remainder of the school year. In addition to protecting Texans from additional spread of the virus, the ATF said the proposal would help them to plan to safely open again this fall.
After nearly one month of online classes, Katy ISD continues to connect with parents and students and provide support. The District's Facebook page features valuable resources and spotlights teachers and students from all grade levels.
Katy ISD also hosts digital resources to better navigate the online instruction environment, support family and student well-being, and provide important updates.
See the list below for valuable digital resources hosted by the District.
Technology Help for Parents & Students Parent Canvas Guide
Use these important links to learn how to navigate Canvas where you can help your student track assignments and grades, and communicate with their teachers.
Click here for information about checking out a device from the District, or for help with a checked-out device that isn’t working or needs to be repaired.
Katy ISD Student Support Services
Katy ISD provides social-emotional wellness tips and how parents can support their children.
Follow this link for full details on specific dates (graduation and prom), exit surveys, transcripts, and more.
For more information about the District’s response to online learning, visit their website or follow them on Facebook.
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