PPISD Will Remain Closed for Students and Staff

Until Further Notice

(Click this link for the official letter of extended closure.)

March 30, 2020

 

Dear Palo Pinto ISD Community,

 

Thank you for your concern and understanding during the recent unpredictable circumstances surrounding the COVID-19 virus. Among a magnitude of important priorities of PPISD, we know that none supersede the safety and well-being of our students, staff, and visitors.

 

The purpose of this message is to announce the proactive measures designed to help limit the coronavirus (COVID-19) risk to our school community. The health and safety of all members of the Palo Pinto ISD community are our primary concern. As local, state, national, and global health recommendations shift to reduce the spread of the virus and out of an abundance of caution and concern for the safety and well-being of our students, staff, and families, we have made the decision to close the physical campus following Spring Break from Monday, March 16 until further notification. However, students will be required to engage in remote, off campus instruction. The details of the instructional plans will be outlined on our website at www.palopintoisd.net each week. 

 

Beginning Monday, March 23rd, PPISD students in 1st through 6th grades will be able to continue lessons from home through the use of Google Classroom and Think Central (Math), with embedded/linked instructional videos and/or through age appropriate lessons available through the PPISD website and/or packets located at the front of the school for PreK-Kindergarten. PreK and Kindergarten will continue to use the packet method via www.palopintoisd.net or paper copies located at the front of the school. Also, there will be a turn in tub for the work packets at the front of the school. Teachers of 1st through 6th graders will be in contact with you about your students' usernames and passwords for Google Classroom/Think Central. Please keep in mind that Google Classroom is new to our staff and students and we expect some hiccups. Our attempt is to offer the most thorough instructional support as we deal with the circumstances upon us. Please feel free to email your student's teacher(s) or Mrs. Rogers (nrogers@palopintoisd.net) for help, if needed with Google Classroom or Think Central. We are here to support you. We realize that not all students will have access to devices or internet. We will accommodate those needs by communicating with your child's teacher.

Google Classroom 

Think Central 

Helpful links to guide Parents and Students on Google Classroom: 

Parents Guide to Google Classroom 2020

Classroom Tutorials for Students and Parents

We want to thank you in advance for your support during this very difficult time.  This situation is not ideal for parents, students, or educators. We would much prefer to be instructing our students in person and preparing them for what lies ahead. It is most certainly our desire not to overwhelm students/parents with a plethora of work, but simply to make an effort to continue instruction as best we can per TEA’s recommendation. We completely realize that most parents have job responsibilities that must be tended to, in addition to life responsibilities, and we do not want to add unnecessarily to the workload. Teaching and learning are much different now than in the days when most adults were in school, so we understand there can be feelings of frustration at times. Please know our staff is 100% committed to doing all we can to support you and your child during this difficult time. Our teachers have methods by which you can communicate with them, including via email. Their email address can be found at this link (https://www.palopintoisd.net/staff) and on our "Staff" page. They are checking regularly. Though the physical facilities are closed, please know that we are continuing to work remotely. Staff are continuing to diligently plan, jump hurdles, and ultimately support you and your child(ren). We care about our students and definitely want them learning and supported. ​

Other Information:

  • Mineral Wells ISD will continue to serve our students with "Grab and Go" meals at Travis Elementary, 1001 SE MLK Jr. Street, Mineral Wells between the hours of 10:00am and 12:30pm.

  • The District is suspending all events, travel, and facility usage effective immediately, until further notification. This includes all activities, field trips, extracurricular activities, conferences, etc.

  • Spring pictures have been cancelled

  • Beginning upon any return of school and until further notified, Palo Pinto ISD will restrict campus visitors (including parents and volunteers) to only those essential for school operations. All parents/guardians/guests/visitors should limit their time on campus to student pick-up and drop-off only.  In order to minimize exposure for all, visitors will not be permitted into the building past the office during this restricted time period, including during morning drop-off in the cafeteria and/or at lunch.  Parent meetings should be scheduled over the phone when possible until after the restriction ends. Please understand we are taking these precautions as a proactive preventative to stop the exposure and spread of the virus, not to be unaccommodating or exclusive.  This restriction may be extended as necessary for the safety of all.

  • During the campus closure, Palo Pinto ISD custodial staff will take this time to further clean and disinfect the building. Also, bus drivers will be cleaning and disinfecting buses. 

  • Palo Pinto ISD has been in communication with staff to ensure that there has been no travel to any of the countries listed by the CDC as Level 2 or 3 travel advisory nations for COVID-19 (China, Iran, Italy, South Korea, Japan, and most of Europe) or to any places of active outbreaks, including domestic locations. If any students have traveled to any high-risk areas, domestically or internationally, we ask that the school be notified and guardians should closely monitor the health of all who traveled. Upon the reopening of the building for classes, students or staff should not come to school with a fever of 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit or higher using an oral thermometer until fever-free without fever-reducing or other symptom-altering (e.g., cough suppressant) medication for at least 24 hours.

  • You and your family can contribute to the effort of prevention by adhering to the following procedures: Cover your cough by using your sleeve, arm, or a tissue--not your hands; Wash your hands often with soap and water for a minimum of 20 seconds; Use an alcohol-based sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available; Limit touching your eyes, mouth, and nose; Clean and disinfect commonly-touched areas of your home frequently; Limit public exposure and follow CDC guidelines; Stay away from those who are sick or may be sick; Stay home if you are sick or if you are experiencing symptoms such as fever, cough, shortness of breath; If you have symptoms, contact your health care professional immediately.

  • As a suggestion, we recommend keeping your child(ren) on a routine schedule. This time will likely also be stressful to them, as they are out of normal routine with school closure and they may be hearing conversations that could be worrisome to them. Set aside a dedicated time for them to focus on their school work and what is relevant for them to stay in routine. Most of the work being provided is work they should be able to complete independently or with minimal support, or work that is supported through online instruction.

 

Please be informed that we are constantly evaluating the situation and will make informed decisions as needed based on these rapidly developing circumstances. We understand the disappointment and implications of cancelling school, events, field trips, and other travel and we do not make these decisions lightly. Again, we appreciate your ongoing flexibility and continued understanding and support during this time. At this time, we do not have information or details regarding any makeup time required from missed time in class. It is our hope, through guidance from TEA, that having distance-learning, as mentioned above, will minimize/eliminate the need for makeup time, though that is still being decided. As details become available, we will keep you informed.

 

In the interest of slowing the spread of COVID-19, all PPISD staff and students/families are asked to avoid travel and large gatherings. If you have already traveled or will travel, we ask that you inform us as soon as possible.  Meanwhile, please continue to adhere to health and safety guidelines posted by public officials. Below I am including links to helpful resources related to COVID-19.  I am also including links for some online instructional resources.

 

For detailed and up-to-date information, we will continue to keep our District webpage and Facebook page updated. Thank you for your patience and understanding during this very trying time.

 

With regards,

 

Wendell Barker

Superintendent

COVID-19 Resources

TEA Guidance - https://tea.texas.gov/about-tea/news-and-multimedia/correspondence/taa-letters/tea-spring-break-guidance/update-novel

TEA Guidance - https://tea.texas.gov/texas-schools/safe-and-healthy-schools/coronavirus-covid-19-support-and-guidance

CDC – https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/schools-childcare/index.html

CDC - https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/schools-childcare/guidance-for-schools.html

US DOE - https://www.ed.gov/coronavirus

DSHS - https://www.dshs.texas.gov/coronavirus/

UIL - https://www.uiltexas.org/

Online Instructional Resources

Scholastic

30+ Virtual Field Trips

Book Reading per TEPSA on Facebook at 6:30pm

Study Island 

Highlights Kids

Math Playground

Prodigy Games 

Scratch Coding Activities 

Starfall Education

Storyline Online 

Seussville

"Grab and Go" Lunch

Mineral Wells ISD will be providing lunch for Palo Pinto ISD students. 

“Grab and Go” meals

Locations: Mineral Wells ISD, Travis Elementary (1001 SE MLK Jr St, Mineral Wells) 

Times: 10:00am to 12:30pm

Internet Availability 
NextLink is willing to work with Palo Pinto Elementary families who may need access to the internet. They are willing to  work individually with each family to find an affordable solution to allow access to online learning due to these unique circumstances.