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‘On Our Way Back:’ Comal ISD Explains the New Normal for Students Returning After Freeze

Remote teaching kits for "weather-affected teachers" were distributed at Specht Elementary. Image courtesy of Comal ISD.

School won’t be the same for some Comal ISD students returning to school Tuesday.

Specht Elementary sustained severe water damage during last week’s freeze. Beginning Thursday, students will be temporarily relocated to four other schools while the district repairs damages.

Several other schools also sustained damage to their HVAC units, gym floors and individual classrooms.

“While some will be resolved quickly, others may take some time to complete the repairs needed,” Superintendent Andrew Kim said in an email to parents. “Rest assured, our maintenance team has done an outstanding job at each school managing electric, plumbing, technology and other sytems to make sure our schools are safe and ready for teachers tomorrow.”

Schools still under a boil-water notice from Canyon Lake Water Service Company (CLWSC) and San Antonio Water System (SAWS) include Smithson Valley High School, Canyon Lake High School, Davenport High School, Smithson Valley Middle School, Spring Branch Middle School, Mountain Valley Middle School, Pieper Ranch Middle School, Rahe Bulverde Elementary School, Startzville Elementary School, Bill Brown Elementary School, Arlon Seay Elementary School, Rebecca Creek Elementary School, Mountain Valley Elementary School, Indian Springs Elementary School, Kinder Ranch Elementary School, and Timberwood Park Elementary School.

These campuses will not have safe drinking water at filling stations until later this week.

Kim said there is water for restrooms and similar needs, but Comal ISD will deliver pallets of bottled drinking water to campuses under the advisory.

He urged parents to send their children to school with water bottles, if possible.

Cafeterias are operating and staff are closely following procedures for the safe use of water in preparing free breakfast and lunch items.

Teachers spent today preparing classrooms for the return of students who spent much of the last week hunkered down in homes without electricity of power.

“After the longer than expected winter break, we know students will need some time to readjust to daily academic rigors,” Kim said. “I have asked teachers to be patient and flexible with their students as we transition back to a normal schedule.

“While academic progress is important, your student’s health and safety are our top priorities,” he said. “If your family is still challenged by issues created by last week’s winter event, let your principal know. I do not want your child’s grades or attendance to suffer because of a lack of water, electricity or another issue…I thank you for your patience as we work to overcome yet another obstacle in your child’s eduction. We have a strong and supportive community, so I know we will succeed and be ready for the next challenge.”

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