LUFKIN, Texas (KTRE) - Some long awaited guidance has been released to Texas schools about in-person instruction from the Texas Education Agency.
TEA announced that schools must follow Governor Greg Abbott’s executive order for wearing face coverings. However, children under 10 are not required to do so. Regina Tucker has two 7 year olds, one of whom has asthma.
“And that’s good in some aspects for like my son with asthma, because it gets kind of hard to breathe sometimes with a face mask on,” Tucker said. “But at the same time, it kind of worries me because, I mean, distancing is a good thing but we don’t know how effective that’s going to be in a closed room environment.”
Inside the classroom, TEA suggested keeping six feet between students.
“They suggested that if it’s possible, to space students six feet apart, then to do that,” said Les Linebarger, executive director of communications at Nacogdoches ISD. “But we’re not necessarily restricted to that, there’s just, they suggested that we follow those guidelines.”
TEA also suggested schools attempt to provide hand sanitizer and/or hand washing stations with soap and water in every classroom and as well clean frequently.
“When you’re dealing with seven year old kids it’s going to be hard to sanitize every surface that they touch,” Tucker said. “Because I know my children, they want to touch everything.”
Linebarger did say they’ve discussed hand sanitation options throughout their campuses.
“Hand sanitizer stations located throughout the campuses, possibly in the classrooms,” Linebarger said. “Hand washing stations become a little more problematic in some of our classrooms, but we’ll just have to make adjustments and work with that as best we can.”
Tucker said she is still not sure her decision on in-person schooling or remote learning but is open to the idea of teachers rotating to classes.
“That kind of eases my mind, you know, that you’re not sending your kid from one class to another,” Tucker said. “They’re in the same environment, not being exposed to areas that other children have been exposed to. Eating the lunch in the classroom, I think that’s a really great idea.”