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Update - August 11

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August 11, 2020

Dear Hutto ISD Parents and Families: 

We are less than 10 days away from the first day of virtual instruction for all students.  We look forward to meeting your children virtually and officially opening the 2020-21 school year.  

With guidance received from TEA (Texas Education Agency) and our local Williamson County health authorities, we will communicate our plans for returning to in-person instruction by either Friday, August 20, or Monday, August 23 at the latest.  On that date, we will determine:

  1. Begin in-person instruction on Tuesday, September 8*; 
    *Students who selected remote learning will continue in remote learning.
    OR 
  2. Extend remote learning two more weeks;
    OR
  3. Extend remote learning four more weeks.

This update provides the latest information for starting virtual instruction.  

INSTRUCTION

  • All students will receive instructions for logging on and connecting with their teachers by Monday, August 17, to be ready for the first day of school on Tuesday, August 18. 
     
  • As of today, we will have virtual (on-line instruction) through September 4 for all students.

  • If health conditions allow, we plan to open campuses to in-person instruction beginning Tuesday, September 8 (the day after Labor Day), for all students who did not select virtual instruction.

  • HOW DO I MAKE CHANGE IN THE INSTRUCTIONAL SETTING FOR MY STUDENT?  Families who selected virtual instruction may remain in that setting all year unless families notify the school of a change by the established deadlines.  The reverse is also true.  Families that start with in-person instruction and wish to change to virtual instruction may do so by the established deadlines. 

ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS

(9-WEEK GRADING CYCLES)

MIDDLE AND HIGH SCHOOLS 

6-WEEK GRADING CYCLES

Notification Due

Effective Date

Notification Due

Effective Date

Friday, Sept. 25

Tuesday, Oct. 13

Friday, Sept. 4

Monday, Sept. 21

Friday, Dec. 4

Tuesday, Jan. 5

Friday, Oct. 16

Monday, Nov. 2

Friday, Feb. 26

Monday, Mar. 22

Friday, Dec. 4

Tuesday, Jan. 5

   

Friday, Jan. 29

Monday, Feb. 15

   

Friday, Mar. 26

Monday, April 12

 

  • The option of on-campus instruction or virtual instruction will still be available as we have previously discussed in our 2020-21 Instructional Plan.

  • Attendance policies are almost the same in the virtual environment as they are in the in-person environment.  If your child will be absent, please contact the school and provide a note upon their return.  One difference is that if you are absent during virtual instruction, you can complete your assignments in the evening and submit them and still be counted “present” under new state rules.

  • WHAT WILL THE REMOTE DAY LOOK LIKE?
    Many have asked about sample virtual schedules. You can find these in our FAQs under “Virtual Learning.”

SAFETY

We are sharing a Safety Response Protocol that serves as an internal monitoring tool that we developed to assist us in making a determination of when it would be safe to return to in-person learning or possibly close a classroom and/or facility in the future. You may see that different districts have different criteria for stages than what we have.  The state is working on standardizing the stages, but for now, this is what we have. 

The Commissioner released updated health guidelines that campuses must follow in order to safely admit students and staff back in our buildings.  We will work with all personnel to make sure that we can confidently “check off” the safety list as well as enhance them to the extent that we can.  Principals are in the process of defining entry and exit procedures for their respective campuses.  You will hear directly from your campus principal about specific safety procedures they are implementing in support of district guidance.  

In the event of a COVID exposure, we have developed this COVID EXPOSURE FLOWCHARTThis will be our reference for dealing with exposures, symptoms, and positive cases.  We will communicate directly with you on any and all positive COVID-19 cases on your campus.  If your student was compromised or directly exposed to a person who tested positive, you will receive a second notification in addition to the general notice to everyone on campus with instructions on how to proceed.  

OTHER POINTS OF INFORMATION

  1. REGISTRATION - All students, including those choosing virtual learning, must complete online registration for the 2020-21 school year. Click here to register if you have not already.

  2. EXTRA-CURRICULAR AND ATHLETIC ACTIVITIES may continue with limitations and strict adherence to safety guidelines before or after school.  In order to minimize the number of people inside our facilities, no in-person activities are permitted during the day.  Watch for communication directly from your child’s coach or sponsor. 

  3. SCHOOL SUPPLIES
    School supply lists are available at this link.
    Students do not need any specific school supplies for remote learning.  They will need basic pens, pencils, and paper and a Chromebook or home computer for all remote learning.  If there any specific materials needed, we will deliver them to homes or make arrangements for parent pick up. 

    The Hutto Resource Center and Hutto ISD are partnering in a school supply drive for Hutto ISD students.  Watch for more details soon.  We will distribute backpacks with school supplies on Sunday, August 30, from 2:00 to 5:00 pm at Hutto Middle School. 

  4. MEET THE TEACHER
    All Meet the Teacher events this year will be virtual. Elementary school Meet the Teacher started virtually today, August 11. The middle school Meet the Teacher virtual calls will be Wednesday, August 12, and the high school will hold theirs on Thursday, August 13.  Each school and teacher are communicating their various scheduled meeting times.

SCHOOL NUTRITION (BREAKFAST AND LUNCH)

  • Curbside “Grab and Go” will be offered at all campuses.
  • Student ID is required. 
  • Multiple meal waivers will allow breakfast and lunch to be picked up at the same time. 
  • Multiple day pick-ups are not allowed. 
  • Parents can pick up meals for all siblings at one school as long as all student IDs are provided.  We request that student ID number(s) be visible when picking up meals for faster service.  We recommend writing in large print and placing on the dashboard where our staff can easily record the numbers and avoid contact with parents and students.  
  • Curbside feeding will be offered at all schools at each campus  from 11:30 - 12:00 during the 100% remote (virtual) learning.
  • The menus will be posted on the website.
  • Breakfast will still be free to all students providing a student ID number. 
  • Meals for qualifying students continue to be free, but not all meals are  free of charge for all students as they were in the spring. Non-qualifying or paid students are charged on their lunch account for “Lunch Grab and Go.”
  • As per state guidelines, we can only feed Hutto ISD students.  No outside district students may participate.  

TECHNOLOGY / DEVICE INFORMATION

With all learning being virtual/remote from at least August 18 - September 4, it is important to make sure all students are ready from a technology standpoint. If you will be utilizing Hutto ISD’s Chromebooks, it is important to pick up a device (see the distribution schedule). If you missed distribution, please contact Hutto ISD Technology Support

PARENT TRAINING SUPPORT

In an effort to ensure our students and families have an engaging and successful experience with online learning, we will provide support, resources, and high-quality training for parents on the various online learning platforms. Parents will have access to application-specific videos and guides for Google Classroom, SeeSaw, and Canvas on our virtual learning district webpage beginning Thursday, August 13

For specific technical support questions, parents will have access to the technology on-line chat service or the Spanish tech helpline (512-750-4770) Monday-Friday 8:00 am-4:30 pm. 

In addition, the Parent and Family Engagement district webpage offers the Let’s Connect link to contact a district Parent Support Specialist. Our web page also includes links to a variety of family resources and the opportunities to stay connected through Facebook and Twitter. 

FAQs

We are happy to answer any questions, but we encourage you to review the FAQs and other information found on our special COVID-19 Return To School web page prior to emailing your question. On that page, you will also find copies of all parent communications that have been sent out going back to last spring (in both English and Spanish). 

CLOSING MESSAGE

Thank you for your patience and trust as we navigate the safety involved in living and working in the midst of a COVID-19 pandemic.  While many children have supportive loving homes, many do not.  Social isolation is detrimental, and the long term effects are difficult to overcome.  We long for the day when we can have all of our students back under our wings, especially those who need the supportive embrace the most.  Take care of one another in the community.  

These are stressful times. Remember that reporting any child abuse is everyone’s responsibility.  If you are not sure of what to do if you suspect child abuse, our administrators, nurses, and counselors are available to help.  Call your school for assistance. 

We extend special thanks to all the parents who participated in Zoom Superintendent Table Talk Q&A. If you missed them, you can view the archived copies.  We look forward to connecting with you again soon. 

In the best interest of our Hippos,

Celina Estrada Thomas, Ph.D., Superintendent

District Executive Leadership Team