Sherman and Denison Independent School Districts will remain closed due to fears of the ongoing coronavirus epidemic. Both districts announced plans Tuesday to extend their break into April amid recommendation from state and national medical and emergency experts.


Denison schools will remain closed for the next three weeks as the district prepares to combat the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, and Sherman schools will remain closed for the next two weeks.


Denison ISD Superintendent Henry Scott said the decision was made following a conference call with Region 10 and the Texas Education Agency coupled with President Donald Trump’s recommendation to keep public gathers to fewer than 10 people.


“All of that combined made us think it would be more than a week,” Scott said in a phone call Tuesday afternoon. “It could be longer than the three weeks. We are going to evaluate it again on April 1.”


Scott said even though there haven’t been any confirmed cases of the virus in Grayson County, the nature of schools makes it easy to spread from one county to the next. He said TEA recommended all schools in the county close for at least three weeks.


“This week is getting things in place for at-home instruction for students,” Scott said. “The teachers will reach out to individual students to address opportunities. The district will also be putting information out on our website.”


Scott said the district will be continuing to provide the free meals for students during the crisis. He also said the district is looking into ways to bring meals to families who can’t make it to one of the campuses, especially low income families.


Scott said the best thing for parents to do is check the website daily.


A news release said the district would be closed until April 6. On April 1 the district administration will meet again to determine if the schools will remain closed at that time.


“We realize that this situation is posing a significant burden on families, but please note that Denison ISD is doing everything possible to protect the health and well-being of our children and teachers,” the release stated. “Learning plans are being designed for “in-home” student instruction beginning the week of March 23. Denison ISD teachers will contact families personally to provide specific details. This in-home instruction is critically important for your child, and we strongly encourage parents to partner with Denison ISD so that your child continues to grow academically.”


Sherman ISD also announced Tuesday that it;s camouses would remain closed through April 3 due to the ongoing Coroniavirus fears.


“Decisions to close the district are made after very careful consideration,” SISD said in a press release Tuesday afternoon. “In the case of COVID-19, Sherman ISD has remained in constant contract with the Centers for Disease Control, the Texas Department of Health and Human Services, Grayson County health officials, the Texas Education Agency and area school district leaders. The district has also reviewed additional guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and President (Donald) Trump.”


District officials are still working on ways to implement district-wide learning plans for remote learning during the closure. Teachers with the district have been contacting families throughout the week to discuss technology needs and limitations that some students may have.


Sherman ISD Communications Director Kimberly Simpson said the district hopes to have remote learning guidelines and plans out as soon as possible.


For more information on Sherman’s plans, lease visit www.ShermanISD.net/covid19.


For more information on the school status keep an eye on the Denison ISD website on a daily basis for updates. www.denisonisd.net


For more information on the coronavirus, visit http://www.HeraldDemocrat.com/Coronavirus.