• 08/05/20 02:00 PM UPDATE 

    Dear MVISD Parents, Guardians, and Students,

    As we prepare for the start of the 2020-2021 school year, I have some updated information that I’d like to share with you. The Board recently voted to open all of our campuses for both in-person and remote instruction on our scheduled start date of August 25th. This includes Luckey Ranch Elementary. In my last correspondence to you, I had stated that Luckey Ranch would only provide remote instruction until September 8th due to a directive from the Bexar County Health Authority. This has changed as a result of guidance from the Governor and Attorney General, which allows local school boards to determine when to open campuses. As we continue to register students for the school year, I know that many of you are waiting for additional guidance concerning safety and procedures for in-person instruction, and procedures for remote instruction. Please be reminded that the registration deadline for returning students is next Tuesday, August 11th. When registering your child(ren), you are asked to choose either in-person instruction or remote instruction. You can change your choice through August 11th. Returning students who do not register by the deadline will automatically be placed on remote learning for the first six weeks.

    As we finalize plans and protocols, those are being posted on our district website on our Panther Strong Start page. That page can be accessed at www.mvisd.com/covid. Based on community and staff feedback, the Panther Strong Start page has undergone a major overhaul and has a number of new and updated documents available to you. I believe that the new Panther Strong Start site is more user-friendly and contains information to help you make a more informed decision concerning in-person and remote instruction. Please visit the Panther Strong Start page regularly, as it will be updated as we develop new documents, and as we receive new and revised information from TEA, the CDC, and the Texas Department of State Health Services. New and updated protocols and documents on that page include:

    ● MVISD COVID Response Protocol
    ● Student COVID Process Map
    ● Staff/Workplace COVID Process Map
    ● Special Programs Action Plan (Special Education and 504)
    ● Gifted and Talented Action Plan
    ● Right at School Safety and Cleaning Standards (Before and after school care provider)
    ● Expanded Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) page, divided into In-Person Learning FAQ, Remote Learning FAQ, and General and Miscellaneous Question FAQ. These FAQ documents will be updated as new questions are posed.
    ● Additional information in a number of areas and programs can also be found on that page.

    Campus principals are finalizing schedules and campus procedures, and will continue to send out information that pertains to their campuses. Updates are also being posted to campus social media sites. Campus supply lists are posted on the campus web pages, as well as the Panther Strong Start page. Parent/Student Handbooks and the Student Code of Conduct are also posted. Please contact the campus principal if you have questions about instruction or procedures on a specific campus.

    Our before and after school care provider, Right at School, does plan to operate this school year on each of our elementary campuses. Registration and pricing information will be sent to families of elementary students. Medina Valley ISD does not operate this program. For questions, please contact Right at School. The contact information will be included in the information sent to you. The Right at School Safety and Cleaning Standards are available on the Panther Strong Start page.

    A reminder that those students who qualify for bus transportation, and wish to utilize it, must register for bus service. This will allow us to build our bus routes while ensuring that we can meet the safety standards that have been developed. If your child(ren) requires transportation, please be sure that you have registered for bus service in the registration system.

    For students choosing remote instruction, the cafeteria will have curbside meals available for parents to pick up, as was done during the spring closure and during the summer break. The meals will be charged based on the student’s eligibility status which can be free, reduced, or paid, depending on the meal application submitted or state eligibility. The meals will be available only for students enrolled in Medina Valley ISD. Meals will be available as curbside at LaCoste Elementary, Potranco Elementary, Luckey Ranch Elementary, and Medina Valley High School. Remote MVISD students may pick up meals at any of these campuses, regardless of which campus they are assigned to.

    I will continue to provide updates as we prepare for the first day of instruction. I look forward to welcoming your child(ren) back for the 2020-2021 school year, whether they are attending remotely or in-person. I also look forward to welcoming all of you who are new to our district. I am glad that you are here. Stay well.

    Sincerely,

    Dr. Kenneth Rohrbach
    Superintendent 

  • 07/23/20 06:00 PM UPDATE 

    Dear MVISD Parents, Guardians, and Students,

    As we prepare to start the 2020-2021 school year, the Texas Education Agency has issued guidance to school districts on reopening schools during the COVID-19 pandemic. Medina Valley ISD will have two options available, the first being in-person instruction, and the other being remote instruction. The MVISD Task Force on Reopening Schools has been meeting regularly, as has the School Board, in order to develop plans for both instructional options. The following are guidelines for parents and guardians to assist in determining which option is the best instructional option for their child(ren).

    Remote Instruction
    Remote instruction will be delivered to students each day that the district is open for instruction. TEA is requiring that remote instruction “mirror” the in-person instruction. The rigor of the content will be the same whether a student is remote or in-person. Students will be expected to log into the remote system daily, watch the recorded lessons or participate in live lessons, and submit assignments according to the due dates established by each teacher. Attendance will be taken and recorded each day in accordance with TEA guidelines. Teachers will schedule times during the day so that remote students can have individual help if needed. Those times will be made available by teachers to parents and students who choose remote instruction. Detailed instructions on accessing the remote system and how to navigate that system will be made available to parents closer to the start of school. Students who are in special programs, such as the gifted and talented program, special education, 504, and ELL, will still receive the services of those programs. If you have a student in one of these programs, district staff will reach out to you to discuss delivery of services while accessing instruction remotely. There are certain high school courses with significant hands-on components that may require students to come on campus to carry out specified assignments and activities that cannot be reasonably completed remotely. Please refer to the MVISD Strong Start page for more information. Additionally, middle school and high school students choosing remote instruction will be allowed to participate in extracurricular activities but must participate in-person in practice and, for athletics, the athletic period. Transportation to and from athletic periods and practices will not be provided by the district. Specific guidelines for those students will be made available prior to the start of school.

    Students who start the school year with the remote instruction option may change to in-person instruction, but that change can only take place at the end of a six weeks grading period.

    For students who did not have access to a computer and/or to internet connectivity during the spring semester, the District has purchased devices to be checked out to those students. The MVISD curriculum department will contact those families who choose remote instruction in order to determine needs in regards to computers and hotspots, and to arrange pick-up of the devices. Paper packets will not be an option for remote instruction.

    For students choosing remote instruction, the cafeteria will have curbside meals available for parents to pick up, as was done during the spring closure and during the summer break. The meals will be charged based on the student’s eligibility status which can be free, reduced, or paid, depending on the meal application submitted or state eligibility. The meals will be available only for students enrolled in Medina Valley ISD. Meals will be available as curbside at LaCoste Elementary, Potranco Elementary, Luckey Ranch Elementary, and Medina Valley High School. Remote MVISD students may pick up meals at any of these campuses, regardless of which campus they are assigned to.

    Library books will be available to remote students as electronic books.

    In-Person Instruction
    For parents who wish to have their child(ren) attend school in person, safety protocols have been established and all students will be expected to follow all safety protocols, with minor exceptions. The safety protocols will be enacted in order to keep not only students safe, but staff as well. These protocols include:

    Screening
    In accordance with TEA requirements, school systems must require teachers and staff to self-screen for COVID-19 symptoms before coming onto campus each day. Parents must ensure they do not send a child to school on campus if the child has COVID-19 symptoms or is lab-confirmed with COVID-19. Any staff member or student exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms while at school will be handled in accordance with the MVISD COVID-19 Mitigation Plan, which is currently in development. TEA requires that each district “post a summary of the plan they will follow to mitigate COVID-19 spread in their schools for parents and the general public, one week prior to the start of on-campus activities and instruction.”

    Classrooms and Common
    Areas Students will be encouraged to wash their hands with soap and water frequently throughout the day. Additionally, each classroom will have hand sanitizer available at the classroom entrance. Students will be spaced as far apart as possible in classrooms given the size of the classroom, and will be expected to wear masks or, in some cases, face shields. Appropriate safety protocols will be utilized for hands-on coursework and small-group lab work. Restroom and office passes will be single-use paper passes and will be disposed of once used. Students will receive training on safe practices in hallways, including required wearing of masks, maintaining appropriate distancing, and not lingering in hallways. Signage will be posted prominently regarding common area procedures. In addition to the hand washing sinks in restrooms, hand sanitizer will also be available. Restrooms and all frequently touched surfaces in schools will be sanitized regularly during the school day, as will classrooms and playground equipment. When students return library books, those books will not be reshelved for at least 72 hours.

    Transportation
    Bus transportation will be provided to those students who qualify for transportation. Because of the need to space students apart on buses, parents must register students for bus service. Students will be required to wear masks on buses and will apply hand sanitizer to their hands when entering and exiting the bus. Buses will be sanitized after each route. Efforts will be made to limit seating to one student per seat. However, students may have to sit two per seat on routes with higher ridership. Morning routes will have students load from the back of the bus to the front. End-of-day routes will have students load buses in reverse order of how they are dropped off at their bus stop. Students who are dropped off first will sit at the front of the bus, with students who are dropped off last sitting at the back of the bus.

    For car pick up and drop off, parents will remain in their cars. Walk-up pick-up and drop-off will be limited to those parents who physically walk to campus and those parents who have children that require assistance in buckling or unbuckling themselves in a car seat or booster seat. Walk-up pick-up is only available at elementary campuses and parents may not line up at the school entrance until 3:00 pm.

    Cafeteria
    Cafeteria seating will be reconfigured in order to allow appropriate student spacing. Dividers may be used in order to meet seating capacity needs of a campus. Additional lunch periods will be added as needed. Students will use hand sanitizer when entering and exiting the cafeteria and will wear face masks, except when eating. Our lunch periods will be closed to visitors due to limited seating capacity and safety concerns. Breakfast will be a grab-and-go meal that students can carry with them to their classroom if the campus decides it’s the best fit for that site. Students may bring lunch to school with them, but no outside food deliveries will be accepted.

    UIL/Extracurricular Activities
    The UIL released guidance earlier this week on athletic schedule adjustments for fall sports. For 5A and 6A high schools, the first day of practice for team sports (volleyball and football) will now be September 7, rather than the original date of August 3. We will still provide opportunities for workouts for the remainder of the summer, and workouts will begin in the athletic period at the start of school on August 25. Dates for first games have also been adjusted. Individual sports (cross-country and team tennis) may not compete until September 7, but may start practice when the District deems it safe. Our coaching staff, band directors, and activity sponsors are working to adjust schedules based on the new guidance. At this time, the UIL has not made any adjustments to any other sports schedules. Safety protocols were developed this summer for our strength and conditioning program, which will be followed for athletics. Similar safety protocols are being developed for band and other extracurricular activities.

    All of our campuses, with the exception of Luckey Ranch Elementary, are currently scheduled to open for both remote and in-person instruction on August 25. All students who attend Luckey Ranch Elementary will receive only remote instruction until September 7, in accordance with the directive issued by the Bexar County Health Authority on July 17. Luckey Ranch will reopen for in-person instruction on September 8 for those students who choose in-person instruction. If any of this changes, I will send you that update when the change is made.

    There is a possibility that we may have to switch to only remote instruction at some point during the 2020-2021 school year. This would occur if the Governor or another authorized official was to order a full school closure or a closure to in-person instruction. Please know that we are prepared in the event that this happens and will be able to support all students and staff in a completely remote scenario.

    Registration is currently open for returning students and I ask that you please complete registration so that we can plan appropriately for the start of school. When registering, you are asked to choose either remote instruction or in-person instruction for your student(s). Please know that you can change your choice up until August 11, at which time we will require that you stay with your final choice. A reminder that those students who start the year on remote instruction may only switch to in-person instruction at the end of a six-week grading period. Those who choose in-person instruction may switch to remote instruction at any time.

    There are still many details that need to be worked out. As we make decisions, new questions arise. My leadership team and I, the School Board, and the MVISD Task Force on Reopening School are working hard to answer those questions. As information and protocols are available, they will be posted to the “Panther Strong Start” section of our website, which can be accessed at www.mvisd.com/covid or www.mvisd.com/strongstart.

    Our world and our lives have changed dramatically since mid-March. COVID-19 is certainly not something that any of us ever dreamed of having to deal with. But, I am optimistic that by working together, we can ensure that our students continue to receive the very best education possible. They deserve nothing less. Together, we’ll get through this. Stay well.

     Sincerely,

    Dr. Kenneth Rohrbach
    Superintendent