Dr. Mark Porterie outlines 2nd phase of PAISD opening, including in-class instruction

Published 4:28 pm Wednesday, September 9, 2020

During this unprecedented time of COVID-19 we have learned of our resiliency. Thank you for your patience and the time spent assisting your children while we learn a new way of instructing our students.

As we move into the next phase of delivering instruction to our students, we must remain aware that COVID-19 continues to be a real disease without a vaccine or cure.

PAISD has put forth great effort in placing a device in the hands of each of our students. The expectation is that students continue to use the devices, daily, that have been loaned to them. Schoology continues to be the Learning Management System utilized to deliver instruction to all students.

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Aug. 18 was the first day of school for PAISD. The district closed on Aug. 25 due to a mandatory evacuation caused by Hurricane Laura, and reopened on Sept. 8. We were out of school for nine days due to the hurricane.

We will utilize the bad weather days listed on the district’s calendar (May 27-28, 2021) to cover two of the nine days. We will submit a waiver, to the Commissioner of Education, for the remaining seven days

Sept. 8 concludes the first four weeks of school. Beginning Monday, Sept. 14, PAISD will begin the phase-in process for in-person learning.

This process will start gradually and will continue through the week of Oct. 12. As we prepare for this transition, parents and students should revisit the district-wide safety protocol videos posted on the main page of our website.

Transition Plan for In-Person Learning

In-person learning, at this time, will be limited to those students whose parents chose that option during the registration period which ended on July 31, 2020.

Entry Dates                                     Grade Levels

September 14th – 18th Pre-K, Kindergarten, PPCD/ECSE, Life Skills and Career and Technical Education students
September 21st – 25th 9th, 1st and 2nd grade students
September 28th – October 1st (October 2nd is a student holiday) 3rd, 6th and 10th grade students
October 5th – 9th 4th, 7th and 11th grade students
October 12th – 16th 5th, 8th and 12th grade students

Students that have chosen in-person learning must wear a mask that covers their nose and mouth (on the school buses and in the buildings) and must bring their learning devices to campus.

Pre-K through eighth grade students must wear school uniforms. Ninth through 12th grade students must follow the district’s Standard of Dress guidelines posted on our website.

In order to promote a safe, positive, respectful and productive learning environment for students, families and staff, ALL (in-person and virtual) students are expected to adhere to the rules and expectations outlined in the district’s Student Code of Conduct and Student Use and Return of Technology Agreement.

Lunch will be served in the cafeteria (for in-person students only). Those students participating in virtual instruction will continue to follow the feeding bus route schedule posted on our website and social media. (Head Start/Special Education students – A.M./All remaining students – P.M.) There will be no visitors on campuses until further notice. Only employees and students will be allowed inside buildings in the interest of safety.

With regard to in-person learning, buses will continue on the usual routes. (The bus routes for in-person learning will be posted on our website, social media, and in the local newspaper this weekend.)

ALL students (in-person and virtual) will follow the traditional school start and end-times and tardy bell schedules, beginning on September 14th. (These schedules will be posted on our website and social media this weekend.) Please assist us by adhering to the rules and regulations set forth by each campus and department.

The first nine-week grading period will end on October 16. There will be no changes to the instructional method (in-person or virtual) selected by the parent for the remainder of this term. The second nine-week grading period will begin on October 19. Parents wanting to change the method of instruction for the second nine-week grading period will be able to make that change from October 5th – 14th. If changes are not made by October 14, the student will remain in the same instructional method, as selected during the first nine-week period.

Please stay tuned to social media, local news, and our district’s website for district news and updates. More specific information will come from your child’s teacher/principal.

Thank you for your continued support and cooperation. Together, we will get through this.

— Sincerely,

Dr. Mark Porterie,

Superintendent of Schools, Port Arthur Independent School District