Parents of FISD:
The beginning of school on Wednesday, September 6th will be difficult for all of us. It will be most difficult for so many of you which have flooded and are living with family or friends, in a temporary home, or a home that looks nothing like it did two weeks ago. All of us talk about getting back to “normal,” but we all know there will be nothing normal about this school year. However, FISD will provide stability in this troubling time, and please know we will do our best to care for your student(s) in a way that will bring healing and hope each day.
We are trying to capture as much information as possible about displaced students in an effort to provide the smoothest transition possible. Many of you have been contacted by your child’s teacher and have provided information to him/her. Nonetheless, if you have been displaced and have not already filled out this form, please click on this link DISPLACED STUDENT LINK to fill out a google form to provide your information to the school to help them serve your needs.
As we start up school after the floods, I want to try to address a few questions many of you may have:
Is the District taking care of teachers and staff that have flooded?
The District has provided work crews, offers of housing, and many other resources to help staff that has flooded. If needed, we have a system of support in place to help cover these teachers while they are handling flood recovery details in the weeks to come. If you would like to donate toward the recovery of our FISD employees, there is a link to do so on both the District and Education Foundation websites.
What if I live outside district boundaries now?
Because you have been displaced by a natural disaster, you can still attend FISD even if you live outside of the district borders. If we do not already have the information on where you are living, we will gather that information from you on Wednesday in order to update our records and also to capture transportation information.
What if I have a student from another District living in my home that wants to attend FISD?
These students need to go to the school they are attending in FISD on Wednesday and check in with the front office. The campus will gather basic information and place students in a class that day. We will work with parents to obtain the required documentation later in the week.
What if my student lost school supplies in the flood?
We have donated school supplies and lunch kits at each campus.
What about transportation?
Transportation is going to be a big challenge for all in these first few weeks. Buses will run current routes and capture lists of riders who have moved to new locations. Likely we will have to adjust routes to get students to school. Buses also will have to navigate through the debris on the streets which will be there for several weeks. This will mean buses will be late and there may be some confusion. Please be patient, we understand there will be parents and students arriving late and returning home late until transportation arrangements can fully work themselves out in the weeks to come.
There will also be people carpooling together for the first time and trying to get to multiple schools. Carpooling is a big help and a way that you as a community member can help those who have been displaced — invite new neighbors to carpool with you to reduce the burden on transportation.
What about lunches?
If you have been displaced and are having a difficult time getting things pulled together for lunch, do not worry. Hot lunch will be provided for those who are unable to get supplies together. Students can tell the cafeteria workers their name and it will be handled.
What about homework and tests?
There will be no homework, tests, or projects requiring work outside of school until September 15th. The district leadership team will re-evaluate at that time.
Doesn’t bringing students back to school take away the work force to clean homes? Our FISD students and staff are heroes for all the work they have done to clean up flooded homes in our community. They have cleaned hundreds of homes. However, more help is on the way. I am aware of many large groups coming in this next week from out of town to work. Also, several local groups continue to provide volunteers for the cleanup. The City of Friendswood has also launched a call center to connect those who need help with those who can help. Information is on the City’s website.
If there are more specific questions that you may have, please address those to individual campuses.
Our community was built by those that used the debris from the famous hurricane of 1900 to build the first church and a school. This resiliency is woven into the fabric of the community of Friendswood. I have witnessed this same spirit across our community over these past few weeks and am confident we will come out of this stronger than ever as a community and a school district.
Thad J. Roher, Superintendent