Texas STAAR results improve in math and reading after pandemic dips
Texas students’ standardized test scores in reading and math moved closer to pre-pandemic levels after falling to levels not seen in a decade the year before, according to results released Friday by t[San Marcos, TX] [Hays County news] News San Marcos News, San Marcos Record [Texas State]sanmarcosrecord.com
‘It’s truly just voter intimidation’: NISD pressured staff, tracked votes during bond election, records show
Employees at multiple Northside Independent School District campuses have told the KSAT 12 Defenders in recent weeks that administrators relentlessly pressured them to vote on a May bond measure, tracked whether they had cast a ballot and in one instance threatened discipline if they failed to do so.
Northside ISD urges another week of virtual learning for students due to COVID-19 surge
SAN ANTONIO – Northside ISD Superintendent Brian Woods sent a letter to parents on Friday, asking them to consider waiting another week before sending students back to in-person learning due to the ongoing rise of COVID-19 cases in the area. “We had hoped to see an improvement in the city’s health metrics and allow students to return Feb. 1. “This applies to those who temporarily switched to virtual learning and those who had hoped to start in-person learning for the third grading cycle.”Woods said the district would determine the possibility of allowing additional in-person learners next week. The superintendent had previously urged parents to consider virtual learning for their kids through the end of January because of the surge in COVID-19 cases. Students who need a device to facilitate virtual learning will be able to get one from their child’s school.
KSAT Kids: Superintendent pushes for virtual learning; student’s art chosen for virtual MLK march; soap boats
In this week’s KSAT Kids’ kid spotlight, we focus on 11-year-old Yesenia Morin, who won a citywide Martin Luther King Jr. art contest. Guide Dogs of Texas, a nonprofit guide dog provider that breeds, raises, trains and matches guide dogs to owners across the state is now looking for volunteers. For students still seeking additional schooling help, the San Antonio Public Library continues to offer resources to help with their lessons. All rights reserved)Volunteers needed in San Antonio to help raise, train guide dogs for nonprofit organizationGuide Dogs of Texas, a nonprofit guide dog provider, has worked to train and provide guide dogs to visually impaired Texans. Holiday lights on San Antonio River Walk (San Antonio River Walk Association)Related Links
Northside ISD urges virtual learning for students due to COVID-19 surge
SAN ANTONIO – The superintendent of Northside Independent School District is urging parents to consider virtual learning for their kids through the end of the month because of the surge in COVID-19 cases in San Antonio. Woods said they’re not closing schools or going to mandatory virtual learning because the state requires them to offer daily in-person instruction and ties funding to that mandate. Students who need a device to facilitate virtual learning will be able to get one from their child’s school. As of last week, NISD reported 190 active COVID-19 cases among campus staff and 346 active cases among the district’s students, according to the district. AdAlso Tuesday, state health officials reported that Texas had surpassed 14,000 hospitalized COVID-19 patients for the first time during the pandemic.
Alarming failure rates among Texas students fuel calls to get them back into classrooms
The problems are concentrated among students trying to learn from home, more than 3 million of the state’s 5.5 million public school students, according to administrators’ accounts. According to KVUE-TV, about 11,700 Austin ISD students are failing at least one class this year, a 70% increase from last year. San Antonio’s Northside ISD has not changed its expectations for virtual students, despite seeing higher failure rates, said Superintendent Brian Woods. Since many students learning from home are low income, Black and Hispanic, lowering academic standards for those students could end up deepening existing inequities, he said. Bizuayehu has dyslexia and dysgraphia, which impacts his ability to write clearly by hand, and he’s found virtual learning much easier.
2 San Antonio school districts make list of top 50 employers in Texas
SAN ANTONIO – Forbes released its list for best companies to work for in 2020 and two San Antonio school districts made the top 50 list for Texas. According to the NISD page, 106,863 students are currently enrolled in one of the district’s 120 schools. Also formed in 1949, NEISD is the second-largest school district in San Antonio. “It is an honor to be recognized by Forbes and Statista, however, it is beyond an honor that our employees put NEISD on this prestigious list.” said NEISD Superintendent Sean Maika. MethodologySurveys and responses were collected from Oct. 2019 to May 2020 to determine which employers made the list.
Northside ISD, North East ISD will delay in-person learning at start of the new school year
SAN ANTONIO – Northside ISD and North East ISD will delay holding in-person instruction for students at the start of the new school year. Instead, both school districts will utilize distance learning for students in an effort to stay safe and limit the spread of the coronavirus. Northside ISD will begin its 2020-2021 school year Monday, Aug. 24 with distance learning. According to school district officials, there will be no in-person instruction until at least the Tuesday after Labor Day, which is Sept. 8. The school district said it will also offer assistance to families that may not have devices or internet for their children to use for distance learning.
Its going to be an all hands on deck situation,: Northside ISD superintendent says on school reopenings
On Sunday, Northside ISD Superintendent Dr. Brian Woods joined Leading SA to speak about the plan in place as schools prepare for reopening. I think it enables us to provide a much safer experience for both staff and students, Dr. Woods said. If the Northside ISD school district had a lab-confirmed positive COVID-19 case, Dr. Woods said a closure or quarantine of some sort would be imminent. And if they dont, we can do distance learning in an effective way thats safe for everybody, Dr. Woods said. The full interview with Dr. Woods can be viewed in the video player above.
San Antonio superintendents prepare for return of in-person classes this fall
Greg Abbott has announced that public school students in Texas will return to the classroom in the fall, San Antonio superintendents are making preliminary plans for the new school year. Related: Texas students will return to school campuses this fall, Gov. Safety is a critical component of each plan, with protocols being developed within a framework of hygiene, physical distancing and other public health considerations. Northside Independent School District Superintendent Brian Woods said that school in the fall does not come without proper health and safety precautions. It will be safe for Texas public school students, teachers and staff to return to school campuses for in-person instruction this fall, Moraths email stated.
Northside ISD task force reveals preliminary plan to safely reopen schools this fall
SAN ANTONIO The Northside Independent School District released a new survey Tuesday detailing how parents feel about sending their children to school this fall. NISD Superintendent Brian Woods said the district is looking at all options and attempting to give families and NISD community members what they want. The task force presented different recommendations during Tuesday's board of trustees meeting, including classroom changes, school bus alterations and suggestions on remote learning. According to Woods, the districts survey was designed to gauge parents' feelings of the pandemic. The district also released key findings of a survey in which thousands of NISD parents responded.
4 Big Questions Schools Need to Address Before Reopening this Fall
Here are four questions speakers said education systems will grapple with as schools prepare to reopen this fall. Martinez, who leads an urban district of close to 50,000 students, identified building family confidence in schools as the biggest challenge his school district is facing. Baray noted that Pre-K 4 SA is also juggling these possibilities and the calendars of San Antonios many school districts, charter, and parochial schools. The past few months underscored the need for school districts to have contingency plans to pivot and maneuver in the case of any development, Toscano said. This will allow school districts to switch between remote or in-person instruction, both of which might be a possibility come fall, he added.therivardreport.com
Coronavirus Questions Complicate San Antonio Schools Fall Plans
Mike Villarreal believes we should all stop saying the phrase getting back to normal, especially when it comes to thinking about students return to in-person classes this fall. During the UTSA panel discussion, State Demographer Lloyd Potter underscored that there will be a whole range of issues to manage if students return to a classroom setting. Northside Independent School District Superintendent Brian Woods emphasized the long list of questions school districts faced in the days after Gov. A spokeswoman for North East ISD said Wednesday it is too early to say what the fall could look like. San Antonio ISD Superintendent Pedro Martinez is another superintendent strategizing for the future.therivardreport.com
With Schools Closed for the Academic Year, Focus Shifts to Summer and Fall
Now, Martinez and other local district leaders are also focusing on how schools can keep students learning over summer break and preparing for the fall, even though in-person classes are not guaranteed. Before school leaders decide to reopen campuses in August, they will weigh the advice of state and local officials. The district plans for summer academic support to occur both in-person and remotely. We think were going to probably need to invite a lot more students to summer school than we have traditionally, Woods said. Southwest ISD school leaders will begin developing plans for individual students based on specific deficiencies in math and reading.therivardreport.com
Superintendents Plan for the Unknown While Playing a Waiting Game
Local superintendents plan to evaluate school closures on a two-week basis, Toscano said, adding families should be planning for the long term. Toscano said San Antonios superintendents had discussed a decision by Dallas ISD made earlier this week to close schools indefinitely. While they felt parents should know that longer-term closures could be expected so they could arrange child care, the school leaders saw a disadvantage in declaring an indefinite time frame. Succeeding in each area is easier in the short term than in the long term, Woods said. The district is working to acquire wireless hotspots that could accompany any devices loaned to students, Woods said.therivardreport.com
Its All About Your Level of Privilege: Families Struggle to Maintain Normalcy During Coronavirus School Closures
Schools announced meal pickups so families that needed assistance feeding their kids could maintain that aid. Schools also said instructional resources would be posted online for families to use with their children. Northside ISD Superintendent Brian Woods oversees the areas largest school district that enrolls more than 100,000 students. Our families, a lot of them, dont have the measures to have meals or get prepared like everyone else can. Credit: Bonnie Arbittier / Rivard ReportOne of Garcias neighbors is a single mom who doesnt speak English and Garcia worried her neighbors kids wouldnt be able to keep learning at home.therivardreport.com