TEA releases new COVID-19 guidelines for upcoming school year

Schools TEA Guidelines
Schools TEA Guidelines(KBTX)
Published: Aug. 6, 2021 at 8:11 PM CDT
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KILLEEN, Texas (KWTX) - With a recent rise in COVID cases and new guidelines from the TEA, many parents and students are concerned about what school will look like this year.

This tax-free weekend, school supplies aren’t the only things on the minds of students like Zavian Tibbs.

“Most parents don’t even want to send their kids back to school,” he said.

In the newly released guidelines, the TEA will not require face masks for students in public schools.

Students with COVID-19 must be excluded from attending school.

Districts do not have to notify parents about positive COVID cases or test, something that Tibbs says is very concerning.

“COVID is still quite deadly,” he said.

“How am I supposed to know who’s sick and who’s not? I’m nervous that COVID cases get out of hand and the football season shuts down again. That’s why I’m gonna continue to wear my mask at school.”

School districts around Central Texas are responding to families’ concerns about the new guidelines. Midway ISD’s Superintendent George Kazanas says they are taking the guidance very seriously and want to leave most decisions to the parents.

“Masks will continue to be encouraged but not required for our schools,” he said.

“We certainly encourage, but don’t require, vaccines for anyone 12 and up. It’s the same with our staff. It’s encouraged but not required to get vaccinated.”

Belton ISD released a statement as well, saying in part, “We are listening to community input through a though exchange survey that closes Monday and working through all available options to decide the best course of action for our students and families.”

Other school districts around the area plan to release similar guidelines next week.

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