COVID-19: Updates from the Texas School Safety Center

Updated: October 27, 2020

The Texas School Safety Center (TxSSC) has been closely monitoring the status of COVID-19, which changes daily. As you are aware, there have been an abundance of school closures across Texas. We wanted to provide you with some updates regarding statewide training, data collection requirements, and efforts to support schools during this time.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Frequently Asked Questions

The Texas School Safety Center (TxSSC) has been responding to the numerous inquiries from schools as they work to respond to COVID-19. We have noticed there are many common questions surfacing as school districts deal with the implications caused by COVID-19. We have created a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) webpage to address the most commonly requested resources and information from the Center during this crisis, and it will be updated as needed. Click on the following link to view the FAQ webpage: COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions

COVID-19 Resources from TxSSC

We created a COVID-19 resource page several weeks ago that is updated weekly with new information, links, and other pertinent guidance being provided from state and federal agencies for schools. In addition, there are TxSSC templates for creating a multi-hazard emergency operations plan annex for communicable disease and information for creating a continuity of operations plan for schools. The resources can be accessed by clicking the link below.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Resources for Schools

The TxSSC is offering technical assistance with communicable disease/health annexes as part of your multi-hazard emergency operations plan. Since many school districts have already implemented closures, and many others are in a state of preparation, we are available to assist any district that needs assistance with the review, or preparation of, a communicable disease annex. For technical assistance requests, please email TXSSC_EOP@txstate.edu.

We acknowledge that schools are navigating an unprecedented situation, all while trying to maintain instructional continuity and provide basic needs to Texas students. Your leadership through this time is commendable and helping to ensure the public health of our communities.

CDA and COOP Virtual Workshop Recordings

The Texas School Safety Center (TxSSC) hosted a series of virtual technical assistance workshops to help schools develop a Communicable Disease Annex (CDA) and a Continuity of Operations Plan (COOP) for their districts. These workshops were focused on supporting the completion of these two components of a district Multi-Hazard Emergency Operations Plan (EOP). These workshops cover topic areas necessary to personalize the TxSSC CDA and COOP templates for a specific district. Below are links to the recordings of both workshops and both template documents.

Communicable Disease Annex (CDA) Planning Workshop Recording

Communicable Disease Annex (CDA) Template

Continuity of Operations Plan (COOP) Virtual Workshop Recording

Continuity of Operations Plan (COOP) Template

Mental Health Care During a Disaster

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and the National Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN) have created some helpful resources for addressing mental health care during an outbreak. These resources are available for all schools, families, and communities as they respond to and recover from this disaster. The resources can be accessed by clicking the link below.

Mental Health Resources

COVID-19 Support and Guidance from TEA

The Texas Education Agency (TEA) continues to work with the Office of the Governor, Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) and the Texas Division of Emergency Management (TDEM) to coordinate and plan the state’s response to COVID-19. To support these efforts TEA has created this resource webpage to support Texas Schools as they respond to COVID-19. This page is updated as new information or resources become available.

TEA COVID-19 Support and Guidance for Schools

In-Person Training Cancellations

To ensure the health and safety of our staff and training participants and engage in the best practice of social distancing, we have canceled ALL TxSSC hosted in-person trainings until further notice. COMING SOON: In an effort to continue providing school safety training during this time, we are transitioning many of our in-person trainings to an online format beginning in May 2020. We will post registration details on our Events page as they become available.

We encourage you to access our online resources and toolkits and to sign up for our online School Safety Learning Portal by clicking the link below.

School Safety Learning Portal

Stay Connected

We encourage you to stay connected with us online, through our social media (Twitter | Facebook | Instagram), contact us form, and through subscription to our email communications for the latest updates.

Thank you for your commitment to our shared mission of creating safe, secure, and healthy environments.

- Texas School Safety Center