HUNTINGTON, Texas (KTRE) - Plans for the fall semester are uncertain; but one thing is for sure: school will happen for all public-school kids in Texas. The Texas Education Agency is surveying all superintendents in the state, in order to learn what internet access is like for their students.
Huntington ISD officials want to ensure their students have access to the internet.
“It’s very important that if they can’t come to school, they are going to have to have internet at home or access to internet somewhere. So, being able to get that information to see what kind of internet we have in our area is very important to us as a district,” said Shane Stover, Principal at Huntingdon High School.
Stover says internet access in Huntington is a geographical issue. With some students, classes online are a challenge.
“A lot of our students use cell phone cards. They get internet off the towers and that might not be adequate in some areas to get the internet for the videos, access to the curriculum and have the ability to upload assignments,” said Stover. “What we have been doing as an administrative team is, we have a framework built to provide access to internet for those students. We are working through what that looks like.”
TEA suggests one of 3 plans for all: face-to-face, online, or a hybrid of both. So, internet connectivity at Huntington ISD is a concern.
“One other thing to consider with the connectivity issues is what happens when we start back to school, and TEA says we need to shut down again? Well, we are not just looking at a small percentage of students who may be at home doing at home learning online at the beginning of the year, but we may be looking at all students eventually,” Stover said.
He says their district will be prepared because students cannot afford to lose instruction time.
Stover said, “We are trying with our online learning plan, either asynchronous or synchronous, as TEA has given us the guidelines on. We want to make sure that it is not just something that we can push out to just 10 to 15 percent of our kids—but that we can push out to all of them, if we need to in the near future.” Stover says that Huntington ISD is still in the planning stages and abiding by TEA guidelines. They sent out a survey for parents to weigh in on fall semester plans, as well.