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Check out NISD’s move forward with in-person instruction, safety measures, online options

NEDERLAND — The Nederland Independent School District announced the 2020-21 Transition Plan for the upcoming school year.

NISD is focusing on in-person instruction and asynchronous learning.

Assistant Superintendent Dr. Stuart Kieschnick said learning expectations would be equal for face-to-face and online instruction.

Asynchronous learning

Asynchronous describes a type of learning that does not occur in the same place or at the same time. Students who choose this option are given class assignments, lectures and activities remotely to complete within a given timeframe.

Kieschnick said it’s important for parents to understand if this option is chosen, there may still be instances requiring kids to be on campus.

Examples include hands-on Career and Technology Education programs, athletic periods and advanced placement testing.

Kieschnick noted students wishing to participate in UIL and other extracurricular activities may still enroll in virtual instruction, but must practice on campus.

“Sponsors and coaches will communicate in-person expectations,” he said. “If you want to play football or basketball or be in the band and participate in something that requires you to be a part of a team or organization, you’re going to have to come to school, participate and practice with that team in order to play in games.”

All students who choose this model will be given a device from the school.

In-person instruction

Those choosing in-person instruction have to follow a set of health and safety guidelines.

All NISD campuses will require daily temperature checks. Students exhibiting symptoms of illness will be referred to an on-campus nurse.

Students who are ill will be separated from peers and should be picked up within 30 minutes of parent notification.

Other students will be removed from the classroom and taken to an alternative location on the campus until it’s disinfected.

Students will be instructed on proper social distancing, hand hygiene, respiratory etiquette, hand washing techniques and participate in scheduled hand sanitizing throughout the day.

Kieschnick said the district will follow up-to-date health orders regarding face coverings.

“We are under a health order for masks right now in public,” he said. “So if we started school today, the governor’s orders, as of today, for schools, all students, staff and faculty are required to wear a mask above the age of 10.

“I’ve heard some thoughts and opinions about young students wearing masks due to anxiety, health issues, bronchitis, allergies — those are real concerns from parents.”

Kieschnick said he’s met with local daycares for their take on the mask enforcement.

“Some of them make their children wear masks and the ones who wear masks wear them all day, every day,” he said. “Those have not had any problems. I was kind of surprised at that.

“What they told me was ‘We taught it, we bought it, we teach wearing masks just like we teach any other skill. The children learned it, accepted it and it has not been a problem.’”

Kieschnick said there may be a time NISD will require all students, including those 10 and under, to wear a mask.

At this moment, a decision for the start of school regarding masks is still under discussion.

Nederland ISD’s Re-Entry Plan can be found by visiting www.nederlandisd.org and clicking on the 2020-2021 image at the top of the homepage.   

Meal services

  • All child nutrition staff will use personal protective equipment and no outside food or beverage will be accepted.
  • Visitors will not be allowed in schools during breakfast or lunch.
  • Utensils will be exposable and students will not have access to self-serving items to prevent cross contamination.
  • All cafeteria staff will wear gloves and masks.
  • Serving stations and lines will be sanitized between classes.

Transportation

  • Students and staff on the school bus will be required to wear a mask and sanitize upon arrival. Bus windows will be open when possible.
  • Buses will be disinfected between each route with the middle seat cautioned off for social distancing.
  • Families are encouraged to carpool, ride bikes or walk when possible.
  • The same rules will be in effect for transportation to and from activities.

Campus cleaning

  • Flu and contagious disease cleaning products will be used daily.
  • Written disinfecting protocols will be handed to student and staff.
  • The school will provide hand sanitizer, disinfecting wipes, face coverings and gloves for each classroom.

Visitors, deliveries and miscellaneous items

  • Informal campus visits will be restricted including during mealtime.
  • Essential meetings will be done by appointment or virtual format.
  • Parents are encouraged to call first for any meeting by phone.
  • Visitors must pass a health screener to enter any campus.
  • No outside deliveries will be allowed (food, gifts, etc.)