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Burnet CISD extends campus closures through April 13

Burnet CISD extends campus closures through April 13

Burnet Consolidated Independent School District Superintendent Keith McBurnett announced March 27 that the district is extending campus closures through Monday, April 13. The return date for students and staff is scheduled for Tuesday, April 14. The extension includes all school and University Interscholastic League activities. Photo by Stennis Shotts

The Burnet Consolidated Independent School District is keeping campuses closed through Monday, April 13.

Superintendent Keith McBurnett emailed a letter to parents March 27 announcing the decision. Initially, the district had suspended classes through Friday, April 3, in an effort to slow the spread of COVID-19.

Governor Greg Abbott had previously issued an order closing schools through at least April 3.

BCISD begins its remote learning program, called “Distance Dawgs,” on Monday, March 30. Parents and students can find information about the process on the district website. The tab is located in the top menu on the homepage. Parents can look thorough general information or their child’s grade level.

The district is looking at a number of methods in which students can complete at-home work, including online, phone calls, or paper and pencil. Officials are aware of the different levels of internet and Wi-Fi connections across the district.

“We know that not only does the level of internet connectivity vary across the BCISD community, but the numbers and types of devices in families’ homes also vary,” Assistant Superintendent Rachel Jones stated in an email to parents. “Our teachers are working very hard to be creative in the ways available for students to show evidence of their learning so that we can serve all students.”

McBurnett has been keeping parents apprised of the situation through regular emails and letters home. He explained in one such communication that he understands the anxiety parents and students, particularly seniors, have. There are a lot of questions regarding spring milestone events such as prom and graduation.

The superintendent said he and Burnet High School Principal Casey Burkhart are trying to steer clear of the word “cancel.”

“We are postponing events, and we are committed to doing everything in our ability to make sure students get to participate in as many spring milestone events as possible,” he stated in the letter.

McBurnett recognizes the loss seniors are feeling as both a superintendent and a father.

“I have a 2020 senior in my home, and I am witnessing the sense of loss as a superintendent but even more personally as a parent,” he said.

He added that he, like everyone else, doesn’t know what the next few weeks will look like and what it means for spring classes and events.

Throughout the closure, the district will continue to provide grab-and-go meals Monday through Friday for all youths ages 18 and younger. The meals are handed out from 10-11 a.m. at the following locations:

  • Briggs Community Center, 215 Loop 308 in Briggs
  • Lake Victor Community Center, 200 Lake Ave. in Lake Victor
  • Lakeshore Branch Library, 7346 RR 261 in Buchanan Dam
  • Hoover Valley Fire Department, 303 CR 118B in Hoover’s Valley
  • Cassie Community Center, 3920 FM 690 in Cassie
  • YMCA of the Highland Lakes at Galloway-Hammond, 1601 S. Water St. (U.S. 281) in Burnet
  • Bertram Elementary School, 315 Main St. in Bertram
  • R.J. Richey Elementary School, 500 E. Graves St. in Burnet

The child or children must be present to pick up the meal or meals. Parents are asked to drive up and stay in their vehicles, and staff will hand them the meals. If families do walk up, they can’t eat on site.

Parents can help the BCISD meal service staff prepare for the grab-and-go meals by filling out an online reservation form.

For more on how COVID-19 is affecting the Highland Lakes, visit the DailyTrib.com coronavirus resources webpage.

daniel@thepicayune.com