• Q&A with the Kennedale News

    Posted by Mandy Rabalais on 12/31/2021

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  • 2022-2023 School Year

    Posted by Mandy Rabalais on 12/29/2021

    Hello KISD,

    I would like to catch you up on where we are this year and where we are with planning for the 2022-2023 school year. Although we have had success this year, it has been a difficult road to maintain consistency and that became very apparent at the start of this school year. However, I am pleased to say that we have weathered the storms and appear to have a genuine sense that we are just now getting back to what school was before Covid despite the multiple distractions we have faced. Our staff has done a phenomenal job of working to fill gaps for students and meet the requirements of House Bill 4545 as well as the multiple requirements that have come down from the Texas Education Agency as a result of the late legislative special sessions. 

    I will start with a recap of our Future Planning and Development community meetings we conducted last spring where we discussed our current facilities, our grade distributions, and future impacts. In these Four meetings, we addressed the fact that we are now required to offer full-day pre-k to students who qualify as well as spatial concerns within our current buildings. We chose to move ahead with the state requirement and made space for full-day pre-k this year at Delaney. Our other concern is that we have 14 housing developments currently under development and potentially, there could be more. There are currently approximately 1200 new housing units under development, of which many will be completed before next year. With projections from 10% to 20% student increase based on these units, we could potentially see an increase in students between 120-240 for the next few years. 

    Our spaces at both Delaney and Patterson have become strained, to say the least, and with the potential for that many more students coming into the district, we needed a proactive approach. We evaluated our capacities and square footage at each campus with the help of Owner’s Builders Resource and through a demographics study conducted by UT Arlington’s City and Regional Planning department. Through these studies, we looked at our utilization of current spaces and how we could shift our grade levels to accommodate future growth, or was there a need for additional construction for new campuses or additions. 

    From our Future Planning and Development meetings, it was decided to shift sixth grade to Junior High and move fifth grade back to Patterson and Delaney. This would allow us space to move pre-k, kindergarten, and first grade to Arthur and take advantage of the classroom spaces. Additionally, this will allow us to create an Early Childhood Center focused on experiential learning and to address requirements from the Texas Legislature and the Texas Education Agency.  In looking at all options, we assessed the status of the old pre-k wing in the Curriculum and Student Services building. We assessed that it would require more to bring that building up to code than it was worth. Therefore, it was decided to demolish this wing and create space to address parking and traffic concerns at Delaney as well as a Central Distribution Center and warehouse for the district in the old gym. This is something our district needs. The demolition of this wing was completed over the Thanksgiving break.

    Following the community meetings, a recommendation was made to the Board of Trustees by community meeting members to shift the grade levels as previously detailed and renovate Arthur to accommodate the Early Childhood Center. The Board of Trustees then authorized the solicitation of qualifications from architectural firms and the architectural firm Huckabee was chosen by the board from twelve firms. The architects at Huckabee have been developing a timeline and the scope of the project. They will be conducting a meeting on January 6 at 6 P.M. in the Media Center for community members who would like more information on the scope, budget, timelines, and general concepts. 

    To facilitate the changes we are going through, we have had multiple planning meetings at the Junior High in preparations for the sixth grade to transition to that campus for the next school year. By moving sixth grade to Junior High, those students will have access to programs such as band, choir, and pre-athletics in an environment conducive to facilitating these activities and providing an introduction to our students of those programs. This planning involves scheduling, start and end times, transportation schedules, and staffing needs. Our administrators have also visited another district that recently underwent the same transition.

    We are also planning on moving the fifth grade to the two elementary campuses. To facilitate this, we will need to create space on those campuses by moving the pre-k and kindergarten students off of those campuses next year. This will require some modifications of restroom areas on all three of these campuses. Based on the timeline by the architects and the progress on the renovations to the older portion of Arthur, we may be leaving the first grade at the two elementary for one more year. This will require that the two-story portion of Arthur be ready over the summer to ensure that the pre-k and kindergarten are accommodated. 

    This summer will be extremely busy with multiple moves and to have these moves lined out, we will have all staffing decisions finalized by the end of March and the beginning of April. To help with all of the moves and transitions this summer, we will conduct all summer school at the High School, the only campus that will not have a transition.

    I hope this information helps and I hope you all have a blessed holiday season.

     

     

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  • Status Level YELLOW

    Posted by Mandy Rabalais on 8/27/2021
    On Thursday, August 26 the Kennedale ISD Board of Trustees voted to transition the KISD Operating Status to level YELLOW. This decision was based on the current high COVID-19 community spread transmission level, the rising number of positive cases within our school community, and in an effort to maintain current District operations uninterrupted.
     
    This status level change requires indoor masking at all Kennedale ISD schools, facilities, and district-provided transportation and will be effective Monday, August 30.
     
    Kennedale ISD will continue to collaborate with the Tarrant County Health Department and any changes or updates to protocols will be communicated to families across district communications channels.
     
    We appreciate our community’s partnership as we work together to keep students and staff healthy and safe.
     
     
     
     

     

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  • COVID-19 Notification | Keeping you informed

    Posted by Chad Gee on 8/20/2021

    Dear Wildcat Families, 

    In efforts to keep all Kennedale ISD stakeholders informed as the COVID-19 community spread level remains HIGH, and based on updated public health guidance from TEA, KISD will adhere to the following:

    • The COVID-19 dashboard will be updated to reflect active and recovered positive cases in our school community daily, Monday – Friday by 6  P.M.
    • Face coverings are not required or prohibited. However, the use of face coverings (masks, face shields, and cloth face coverings) is strongly encouraged.
    • KISD staff, students, and visitors will be expected to self-monitor and if not feeling well, stay at home.
    • If an individual who has been in a school is test-confirmed to have COVID-19, Kennedale ISD will notify the local health department, in accordance with applicable federal, state, and local laws and regulations, including confidentiality requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).
    • Upon receipt of information that any teacher, staff member, student, or visitor at a school is test-confirmed to have COVID-19, the school will submit a report to the Texas Department of State Health Services via an online form. The report will be submitted each Monday for the prior seven days (Monday-Sunday).
    • Consistent with school notification requirements for other communicable diseases, and consistent with legal confidentiality requirements, Kennedale ISD will notify all teachers, staff, and families of all students in a classroom or extracurricular or after-school program cohort if a test-confirmed COVID-19 case is identified among students, teachers or staff who participated in those classrooms or cohorts.  This notification will be sent via our blackboard messaging system.

    For information regarding COVID-19 screening tools, FAQs, and the current operating status level, please access the District’s COVID-19 resources webpage.

    *Operating status level, restrictions, and guidelines throughout the school year will continue to be dependent on health-related circumstances in Tarrant County and our community as we continue to follow the guidance from our local, state, and national agencies.

     

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  • Superintendent Gee's Welcome Back Message

    Posted by Mr. Gee on 8/10/2021

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  • 2021-2022 | Back to School

    Posted by Superintendent Gee on 8/1/2021

    Dear Wildcat Families,

    Back to School
    After quickly pivoting to virtual instruction in the spring of 2020 and offering families the choice of virtual or on-campus learning during the 2020-21 school year, all students will return to in-person instruction for the 2021 school year. As Kennedale ISD continues to respond and recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, we hope to resume school in a more traditional manner. KISD knows the best environment for student success is in the classroom with their teachers and we look forward to welcoming all of our students back in the buildings on August 12th.
    The District will implement a number of strategies to address the impact of COVID-19 on student learning and mental health. This includes the use of evidence-based interventions to address learning loss and investments in additional support for students’ social-emotional and behavioral needs. 
    Thanks to a third round of Elementary and Secondary School Relief (ESSER) grant funds, KISD has additional resources available to support COVID-19 recovery efforts. KISD has conducted meetings and a survey to solicit stakeholder feedback and to formulate a plan to utilize the ESSER III funds. Learn more about our plans for these federal dollars.


    Back to School Fair
    KISD will be having a Back to School Fair on Thursday, August 5 from 4-7 P.M. at Kennedale Junior High. Parents will be able to:

    • receive help with registration/uploading documents.
    • mobile clinic offering the required vaccines as well as COVID vaccines.
    • sign-up for bus service with our transportation provider, Goldstar.
    • have questions answered about Hazel Health.

    Safe Return to In-Person Instruction and Continuity of Services Plan
    As previously stated, Kennedale ISD looks forward to welcoming all students back to in-person learning for the 2021-22 school year. Students, staff, and families can expect a return to standard operations after significant impacts to the 2019-20 and 2020-21 school years in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. For our summer programs, we returned to level green on our status chart and we will open the school year under this level until we receive different guidance or mandates from the state.
    The following protocols will be in place in all KISD facilities. Please note these are subject to change:

    • Staff, students, and parents will continue to be expected to self-monitor and If not feeling well, to stay at home.
    • Masks will be optional for students, staff, and visitors.
    • All campus visitors will continue to be required to make an appointment unless it is a scheduled school event.  
    • Campuses will promote and encourage social distancing where feasible.
    • Staff and students will continue to be expected to wash their hands frequently throughout the day and hand sanitizing stations will be distributed throughout the campuses for this purpose.
    • Electrostatic spraying of buildings will continue.
    • Parents and employees will continue to be required to report confirmed positive cases of COVID-19 to campus administration or their supervisor.
    • At this time, TEA has removed all notification requirements except for those listed in their public health guidance.

    Restrictions and guidelines throughout the school year will continue to be dependent on health-related circumstances in Tarrant County and our community as we continue to follow the guidance from our local, state, and national agencies.


    Masking and Vaccine Policy
    On May 18, 2021, Texas Governor Greg Abbott announced that public schools cannot require masks on their campuses for students, teachers, parents, staff members, or visitors starting June 5, 2021. This decision was part of an executive order that banned government entities in Texas - like cities, counties, school districts, and public health authorities from mandating masks. On July 29, Governor Abbott refiled his executive order to include additional clarifying language on requirements for vaccines. School districts are not allowed to require vaccines as a requirement for enrollment or employment.
    As a result of the Governor’s Executive Order, Kennedale ISD is not permitted to mandate masks or vaccines for students, staff, or visitors.  KISD’s masking policy allows students, staff, and families to make personal decisions regarding the use of face coverings based on their unique circumstances. KISD has offered opportunities for staff to be vaccinated and we have provided opportunities for students who are eligible to be vaccinated.


    2021-2022 Free Meals 
    Kennedale ISD will offer daily meals to all students at no cost for the 2021-2022 school year. Typically, a student’s household must meet income eligibility requirements to qualify for free or reduced-price meals. However, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) issued guidance that allows schools to offer meals to all students at no cost this school year. 

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  • About the SuperintendentSuperintendent Gee was born and raised in West Texas and graduated from Odessa Permian High School before earning his bachelor’s degree from Texas Tech University. He started his career in the Hurst-Euless-Bedford ISD as a junior high football coach and English teacher. HEB ISD is also where he met his wife of twenty-four years, Stacey. From HEB, Mr. Gee and his family made multiple coaching stops across Texas before stopping in Northside ISD in San Antonio.

    While working at William Howard Taft High School, Mr. Gee pursued and acquired his master’s degree in Educational Leadership from Sul Ross University. After acquiring his principal certification, he moved into administrative positions in both Hillsboro and Comanche ISDs before becoming Superintendent at Yorktown ISD. Superintendent Gee served the students, district, and community of Yorktown for two and half years before moving to Kennedale ISD as the new Superintendent. 

    Through his travels and service in different size districts, Superintendent Gee has had the opportunity to attend valuable training, work alongside, and learn from some of the best teachers and administrators in the state. Mr. and Mrs. Gee have two children; Caleigh attends Texas A&M University majoring in education and Colby, a 2020 graduate of Kennedale High School, attends Texas Tech University. Superintendent Gee and his family love being part of and serving the Kennedale community and look forward to continuing the success that KISD has experienced. 

Last Modified on January 4, 2022