My fellow members of the community, Liberty ISD Administration, and LISD Board of Trustees,
First off, this is not a letter of complaint. I hope this letter may garner more support for Liberty Independent School District in future decisions regarding possible COVID-19 transmission in our schools. We must all work together to get through this.
According to the COVID Counter on LISD’s website, previous precautionary measures to prevent transmission of COVID-19 have not been enough. There is still too much transmission within the schools. In response, LISD has stepped up in its precautionary measures. They recently sent out a letter recommending mask wearing from “optional” to “strongly recommended” along with other important precautionary measures.
But why practice “wait and see” when we could more quickly curtail transmission within schools by practicing more conservative precautions rather than wasting time, deteriorating human resources and district budgets further?
Members of the community, are you aware of what educators and staff are having to do to keep our schools running? These public servants are exhausted. They run double duty, triple duty just to keep the schools running. Front staff no longer deal with the normal humdrum of answering calls from parents. They are constantly calling parents for contact tracing, to report exposure and request student testing. There are not enough substitutes to go around. Principals, vice-principals, and educators take turns throughout the day substituting for the educators who are absent and must be quarantined for 10 days.
Economically, it makes sense to do everything possible to keep the students healthy and in their seats. Every day that a student is absent, the district loses funding, but still has to pay for educator and staff salaries, building maintenance, operations, electricity, and all the other needs it takes to run a school district, especially during these times. If a student tests positive for COVID-19, they are out for a minimum of 10 days.
Why hasn’t the school district ordered a face-covering requirement? If LISD did make this change, would parents start to file complaints or issue threats at the next school board meeting as we have seen from other school board meetings in the area? I would hope not.
Today, I respectfully ask you, LISD administration and Board of Trustees, to adopt a face-covering requirement. This community cannot afford for LISD to close as other school districts in the area.
I also ask, respectfully, of everyone in the community to support and encourage Liberty ISD in this effort to keep our students, staff, and their families safe at school. Please do not give them grief for making unpopular decisions to keep our community safe.
The methods LISD enacted last school year worked impressively well in keeping students and staff healthy. The numbers proved it. Adding this last layer of protection to prevent airborne transmission just makes good economic sense.
Thank you for your time in considering this respectful request.
Laurie Gonzales, a concerned parent and member of this community