HISD can only react to issues like 1st day outage, superintendent says

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Tuesday, September 8, 2020
HISD superintendent on 1st day of school website crash
On the first day of virtual learning for 214,000 students, HISD Interim Superintendent Grenita Lathan called this year the "year of flexibility." That flexibility was being used right away when their site crashed. Listen to how her district addressed the challenge.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- The website for the largest school district in the state should be back online after going down for several hours Tuesday morning.

Houston ISD's website didn't load for users as information technology sites reported the site had crashed around 8 a.m. Servers finally began responding some time after 11 a.m., and the district confirmed just before noon that things were running again.

"We are aware of the technical issues occurring this morning," a spokesperson for the district said in a statement earlier in the morning. "Please know we are working swiftly to get everything moving again for you."

HISD Interim Superintendent Dr. Grenita Lathan said the outage did not impact a learning hub website used by students.

TED OBERG INVESTIGATES: Houston ISD found just 1,000 of its 8,500 prioritized lost students

"The hub is actually not down," Lathan said. "It is one of the hosting sites, and I can confidently tell all our families that HISD is committed to the call to serve."

Some ABC13 viewers, though, disputed the portal's accessibility into the afternoon.

"The HUB ... has not functioned properly all day. It is still currently (1:00p.m.) not working," a viewer named AD emailed ABC13.

She added the type of issue experienced this morning was something they couldn't prepare for and can only react to, since the issues appeared to be on the service provider's end, she said.

Lathan also outlined how the district planned to equip students with appropriate technology to avoid falling behind this academic year.

"We're still working diligently to assure that every child in HISD has access to a device and reliable internet to fully engage in virtual learning at home until it is safe to physically return to the classroom," Lathan said. "For students who have yet to receive technology from the district, we have designated 36 HISD digital learning centers."

WATCH: HISD parent explains how district devices are helping her kids this school year

The family had one old tablet they'd used for five years for their children. That changed this year thanks to HISD, the parent said.

The 36 learning centers are set up to allow students without access to home technology to engage with their home campuses remotely.

READ MORE: HISD opening 36 campuses as digital learning centers for students in need

Houston ISD wasn't alone when the main website crashed Tuesday. Other districts also reported outages.

In Lamar Consolidated ISD, Campbell Elementary administrators reported issues with remote access due to a power outage impacted the neighborhood surrounding the school.

SEE ALSO: 13 Investigates Houston campuses with fewest students engaged