The following is a message from Harmony Public Schools CEO Fatih Ay.
Dear Harmony Families,
Like many of you, we at Harmony Public Schools are greatly concerned by the rise in COVID-19 cases attributed to the Delta variant.
At Harmony, we are working diligently to keep our schools safe and provide families the tools they need to keep their child protected from COVID-19.
Today, we would like to share with you several important updates regarding Harmony’s COVID-19 policy and procedures.
First, we would like to announce that we will be offering a TEA-approved “remote conferencing” option that will allow students a limited ability to attend classes from home if they are sick, have been exposed to COVID-19, or in a COVID-19 high-risk group.
Per TEA requirement, the total amount of time for remote instruction may not exceed more than 20 instructional days for the entire 2021-22 school year. In order to be eligible, students must meet one of the criteria below:
- The student is unable to attend school because of a temporary medical condition that is documented by a physician licensed to practice in the United States.
- The student’s healthcare provider is required to complete and sign an HPS COVID-19 High Risk Exemption Medical Certification form. Parents need to submit the form to the school health aide to confirm eligibility. Failure to provide the completed form will disqualify a student from participating. Here is the link to download exemption application form: https://www.HarmonyTX.org/medicalrequest
- The student has a positive test result for a communicable condition listed in state regulations at 25 Tex. Admin. Code §97.7. Parents need to provide test results to the school health aide listing the communicable condition. This includes a positive test result for COVID-19.
- The student has been identified as having been in close contact with a COVID-19 positive individual as confirmed by the school, the student’s health care provider, or local health agency. Parents need to provide written notification or send email to the school health aide.
Next, we would like to share an update regarding contact tracing and reporting of potential COVID-19 cases on campus.
Although it is not required for schools to conduct contract tracing and inform parents if someone in their child’s class had tested positive for COVID-19, we believe families have the right to know what is happening at their child’s school. That’s why we will continue to implement the following measures.
- Inform parents if a child or team member tests positive for COVID-19 in their classroom.
- Conduct contact tracing to determine the potential spread of COVID-19 in our schools.
- Provide transparency to the public about our schools by continuing to update our COVID-19 “case count” dashboard, which can be found at www.HarmonyTX.org/coviddashboard.
- Continue to work with local pharmacies and community health organizations to host on-campus vaccination clinics for team members and eligible students age 12 and older. (Please follow your campus Facebook page and parents newsletter for more info about upcoming campus clinics near you.)
Finally, we understand that a full remote learning option is something some of our families are highly interested in. Currently, state leaders in the Texas Legislature are convening in Austin to vote on whether they will allow districts to offer full virtual learning.
We don’t yet know what the decision of the Texas Legislature will be, or how long it may take to reach that decision.
What we do know is that an option for virtual learning is an important issue to our Harmony families across the state. That’s why, despite the challenges schools across Texas have faced in offering virtual learning this fall, we are fully prepared to quickly move to a virtual option for those families interested, should state leaders approve this option.
We will continue to keep you updated as new developments occur.
Thank you for your support and collaboration throughout this process, and for being a part of our Harmony family.
Fatih Ay | CEO, Harmony Public Schools