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Leading SA: Somerset ISD superintendent assures students, staff the district is prepared for virtual learning

'We’re going to continue to work together to make sure students get a quality education in our district.'

SAN ANTONIO – For a lot of families and students in San Antonio, this weekend marks the last of summer vacation as many school districts begin classes this week.

Somerset ISD begins virtual classes Monday, Aug. 24, and Superintendent Dr. Saul Hinojosa joined us in studio to discuss the plans in place for the start of the school year.

We are starting [Monday], 100% virtually. We’re going to do that for the first two weeks, and we anticipate bringing students back into our classrooms after Labor Day on September the 8th,” Dr. Hinojosa said.

Although classes are beginning virtually for Somerset ISD, Dr. Hinojosa said it isn’t without its own set of unique challenges.

“We’re in a somewhat rural area. Connectivity is a big issue. We do have areas in our district where people don’t have access to the internet. So the district has passed an initiative to issue students hotspots, but there’s still areas where even though we issue a hotspot, that student still cannot access the internet,” Dr. Hinojosa said.

Although students will be learning virtually for the time being as the coronavirus pandemic continues in the area, Dr. Hinojosa said school district staff is working to make sure the digital format doesn’t hinder students’ learning experiences.

“We’ve set up a task force at each campus. A group of four to five individuals in their solo tasks is to go make home visits. We’ve been out knocking on doors for those parents that we can’t get ahold of. So we want to make sure that we’ve reached every student. As of Friday, I believe we’ve touched about 90%, 96% of our families. So we’re going to start Monday. We’re going to go try to find that other 4%,” Dr. Hinojosa said.

The district is still preparing for if and when students return to the classroom, but they just want to assure students and families that every precaution is being taken.

“We’ve built trust in our community and we’re going to continue to work together to make sure that students get a quality education in our district,” Dr. Hinojosa said.

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