2 more Fort Bend ISD elementary schools to temporarily make full or partial switch to virtual learning

Oakland, Drabek for only Pre-K join Pecan Grove in virtual shift

Several factors go into decision to close schools

Fort Bend Independent School District announced Tuesday that Oakland Elementary School will join Pecan Grove Elementary School in temporarily switching from face-to-face to virtual learning. Drabek Elementary will also do so, but only for its Pre-K students.

Oakland Elementary School

According to Oakland Elementary’s press release, as the county battles the surge of COVID-19 cases and the delta variant, the decision was made for the switch to virtual after assessment from the FBISD COVID Response Team. Oakland will shift to online learning starting Thursday, Aug. 26, with a projected return date for face-to-face learning of Thursday, Sept. 2, although that return date is still pending official confirmation that will come on Wednesday, Sept. 1.

According to the FBISD website, Oakland Elementary School has 24 students and 5 staff members who are currently positive with COVID-19.

Pre-K students at Drabek

The same time schedule for virtual learning applies to the Pre-K students at Drabek. Pre-K students at Drabek can still attend school face to face on Wednesday, Aug. 25. Drabek reports four positive student cases and three total staff members also positive with COVID-19.

Pecan Grove Elementary

The announcement comes less than a day after Pecan Grove Elementary announced they would shift to virtual learning starting Tuesday, Aug. 24 through Friday, Aug. 27.

In an email to parents, Pecan Grove Elementary School’s principal said the reason students needed to go virtual was because of staffing issues. Pecan Grove has the third-largest number of cases in the district with 31 students who tested positive as well as two staff members.

Students at Pecan Grove are expected to return to in-person learning on Monday, Aug. 30.

Some parents are frustrated

“I want everyone to stay safe but I just wish the last-minute indecisiveness wouldn’t be a thing,“ said parent, Chelsea Cashiola.

”I’m kind of bummed because my daughter is in kindergarten but it is what it is,” said parent Julie Hopkins.

“There was no masks in schools required so this was an eventuality. It’s too late,” said parent, Andrew Sykes.

Mask mandates

Last night the school board also voted to restore a mask mandate district-wide.

In a statement, acting superintendent Diana Sayavedra said, “We are aware that some families may feel anxious about the mask mandate, but we hope that we can all unite in the spirit of cooperation and support of our students and staff.”

The mandate will go into effect on Wednesday, Aug. 25 at 11:59 a.m.

For more information regarding Oakland Elementary, click here.

For more information regarding the Pre-K students at Drabek Elementary, click here.

For more information regarding Pecan Grove Elementary, click here.

About the Authors:

Award-winning journalist, mother, YouTuber, social media guru, millennial, mentor, storyteller, University of Houston alumna and Houston-native.