DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – The head of Dallas public schools promised the Dallas City Council on Wednesday the district will still be able to feed and educate thousands of children impacted by the coronavirus-related schools shutdown announced Tuesday.
Superintendent Michael Hinojosa also said he was heartbroken to learn a Dallas ISD student was infected with COVID-19.
Hinojosa faced some tough questions from city council members about how so many students without home internet access will be able to continue learning outside the classroom.
There are 160,000 students and 230 schools in DISD.
The Superintendent said it’s still unclear when or if they will be able to go back before the school year ends or whether it will affect graduation ceremonies.
Hinojosa told the council no employees are known to have the coronavirus and classmates who had contact with the infected student are being tested.
The big concern is continuing education at home with an estimated 40% of the student body lacking internet access.
Hinojosa says he’s working to get WiFi devices either purchased or donated to solve the problem.
“There are solutions with hotspots,” said Hinojosa. “We have a number of hotspots. We will be asking for others to be donated. If people want to help that would be a great solution.”
All secondary school campuses will be open from 10 a.m. to-1 p.m. for students to get three days worth of meals and lesson plans.
Ninety-percent of DISD students are economically disadvantaged and rely on the meals which are as much a priority Hinojosa says as the lesson plans.