Posted on 02/26/2020

SAN ANTONIO –Feb. 26, 2020 - Harlandale Independent School District is keeping track of the coronavirus through proven and trustworthy sources: our local health department, the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS), and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). While a new type of illness can be scary, we can protect our students, teachers, and the broader community by using simple everyday actions that protect people from other types of respiratory viruses, and spreading facts rather than fear.

These health officials believe the risk to our school community is low at this time. The DSHS is the state authority on all information about the spread of the novel coronavirus and it is a priority for the state to provide factual information during this time. Updated information from the CDC on coronavirus in the United States can be found at: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html. The most recent information about coronavirus in Texas may be found at: https://dshs.texas.gov/coronavirus. The DSHS also provides valuable information regarding the flu (https://www.dshs.texas.gov/flu.)

Based on the current information, health officials are recommending local communities and schools should take the same steps to protect against coronavirus as we take to prevent the spread of everyday illnesses like the common cold or the flu:

·       Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.

·       Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.

·       Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

·       Stay home when you are sick.

·       Cover your mouth and nose with the inside of your elbow when you cough or sneeze.

·       Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

Our teachers, school nurses, and staff are working carefully to encourage these simple and effective habits of frequent handwashing, covering every cough or sneeze, and cleaning classroom tables/surfaces frequently. This is important not just to help prevent the spread of coronavirus, but to help prevent the spread of other infections that can lead to student illness and absences. 

School will be held as long as it is deemed safe and appropriate in our area. At this time there is no plan to offer video classes in lieu of daily attendance. As for school closures, we already have minutes built into our school calendar that allow for closure as a preventative measure or as a result of high absenteeism. In accordance with TEA, historically school closures occur when 15-25% of students and/or staff are absent. Thank you for your support of our District, our schools, our students, and our teachers and staff.


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