TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - The first school district to resume classes in East Texas — Henderson ISD — now has a total of 10 confirmed cases of COVID-19.
Nine students and one staff member — who wasn’t in a teaching position — bring Henderson ISD’s total of confirmed COVID-19 cases to ten.
“We have had at least one case on all our campuses, except the intermediate and primary campuses,” said David Chenault, the director of communications for the district.
Chenault said this was to be expected. “As we’ve had our first initial cases here and there, we expected that,” said Chenault. “We know there’s no way to completely prevent the spread of COVID-19, but we want to do all we can to slow it down, as much as possible."
Chenault said their COVID-19 plan is working.
“We knew from the very start our plan was going to be a work in progress; we always plan the best we can, but we know reality is going to change things along the way,” said Chenault. “We’ve already made adjustments to that plan; updating the way we do things. Tts worked out great."
Chenault said the biggest problem the district has faced so far is notification of people who may have been in close contact with confirmed cases.
“Our policy is going to be, we want to notify all our parents and students on campuses where we have positives, then we send a public communication to the community,” said Chenault. “So people understand we’re keeping track and know, going forward, what’s going on in the school.”
The district’s plan will remain flexible to adapt to UIL, TEA and DSHS guidelines according to Chenault.
“Our main goal is to educate kids and if we can’t educate kids with five kids sick, and that prevents us from educating kids as a whole, we need to step back and address the issue,” said Chenault. “If we can continuing educating with 50 cases, we’re going to continue."
The district is asking parents to keep their children home if they have symptoms, or if anyone in the family is positive for COVID-19 and to let the district know.
Chenault said the district’s nurses are helping keep the plan up-to-date and changing it as new prevention methods and information about how the virus spreads are discovered.