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AISD addresses surge of COVID-19 cases and staffing issues

Robin Bradshaw
Alice Echo News Journal
Alice Independent School District

Alice Independent School District (AISD) is closely monitoring the recent surge in coronavirus (COVID-19) cases in the county. AISD Superintendent Dr. Carl Scarbrough met with the COVID-19 task force on Tuesday and plans to continue to mitigate the spread of the virus in area schools. 

On Tuesday, Jan. 5, AISD had seven employees self-report positive for COVID-19 and 16 staff employees under quarantine with possible exposure to the virus. AISD currently has 750 employees and an active face to face student participation of 35 percent.  

"These recent COVID-19 cases are off-campus staff, and we, as a district, are mitigating all possible exposure for the safety of the staff and the students," Scarbrough said. "AISD is not planning on closing down any schools at this time. The district is facing multiple challenges due to the pandemic and I feel for the frontline workers in the cafeteria and custodial staff as well as all the teachers. AISD currently has 27 substitute teachers when the district normally staffs around 100. There are many challenges AISD has faced and we are all doing our very best to keep everyone safe." 

Due to teacher and substitute shortages, students have been combined on occasions to accommodate the lack of staffing.

"On the occasion when classes have been combined due to staffing issues the classroom is moved to the library or the cafeteria to create a bigger space for safety," Scarbrough added. "It is a balancing act the district cannot close for more than 14 days to maintain state funding it is important for everyone to do their part to keep staff and students safe." 

For up to date information on the COVID-19 cases at AISD visit their webpage at https://www.aliceisd.net/