10 Houston-area school districts welcome students today

Tom Abrahams Image
Tuesday, September 8, 2020
At least 8 Houston-area districts starting school tomorrow
EMBED <>More Videos

This is certainly not the school year teachers and staff had in mind, but Tuesday will mark the first day for in-person or virtual classes for at least eight districts.

Today marks the start of a new school year for 10 Houston-area districts.

Online only:

  • Channelview ISD
  • Galena Park ISD
  • Goose Creek CISD
  • Houston ISD
  • Sheldon ISD

Online and in-person:

  • Cy Fair ISD
  • Coldspring-Oakhurst CISD
  • Klein ISD
  • Liberty ISD
  • Tomball ISD

It will be an adjustment with social distancing and face coverings for those on campus and enhanced virtual learning for those who stay home.

READ MORE: How Houston ISD plans to equip students for first day of online instruction

At Spring Branch ISD, the district has already started online learning but will begin in-person instruction on Tuesday.

"We are so excited to welcome our Spring Branch family back to a brand new school year," said Superintendent Jennifer Blaine in a video published on the district's website along with a host of safety protocols for students, teachers, and parents.

Angie Rivera, a mother to a kindergartner and a seventh grader, said she's ready.

"I've already taught my oldest to wear his mask at all times and have his hand sanitizer with him," said Rivera. "So, I hope I prepared them enough for that. I am worried, but I trust he'll do well and my little one as well. "

All Houston-area districts have new protocols, and they all publish updates to their websites so their communities know what to expect on day one and beyond.


Katy ISD is welcoming the return of students who opted for in-person instruction on Tuesday. Students who opted for the online-only option will continue with their schedule.

"This is not how any of us envisioned the beginning of the school year," said Courtney Doyle, the Katy ISD board president. "I truly believe we will rise to the challenge."

Klein ISD is on the same boat. Half of its students are learning at home and half will be on campus.

Cy-Fair ISD is also giving parents those options. They've worked hard to minimize risk and enhance learning.

READ ALSO: SuperNova Furniture giving away free tablets to students in need

Also on the north side, Tomball ISD is giving parents the option and 59% will return to campus.

"It's been a great deal of work for not just Tomball but for all the districts through the state, throughout the nation to make sure that we're providing what our families want," said Tomball ISD Superintendent Martha Salazar Zamora. "We've followed three pillars in Tomball ISD: the pillars of grace, patience, and love. I think we've had to continue to ask for all three of those and I think we will need to continue to ask for all three of those."

Other districts that are opting for an all-virtual start include Sheldon, Channelview, Goose Creek, and Galena Park.

"While it is our intent to remain committed to the TEA guidelines of face-to-face instruction, we will take the necessary steps to mitigate the spread of illness within our community," said Galena Park ISD Superintendent John Moore.

In all cases, districts hope to have everyone back on campus sooner than later, but they say that depends on how well their communities abide by the safety measures they've employed.

At Tomball's Creekside Park Junior High, they expect 500 of the enrolled 900+ students to be on campus.

"It's been quite a challenge. A little bit more preparation, especially with the safety aspect," said new principal John Vaglienty. "We have one-way hallways. We have 'Walk on the right side' signs. We have stickers. We have teachers out and about with masks on. All the staff has been trained on washing hands, using hand sanitizer, keeping their masks on."

Tomball, like several medium to large suburban districts, is offering parents the choice of online or in-person education. The planning since March has been almost non-stop, but the real work begins this Tuesday.

Follow Tom Abrahams on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.