TAMPA — The Tampa Bay Times will be following the news in all our local districts, now tha Florida has closed schools for the rest of the academic year. A detailed letter went out Saturday to Hillsborough families.
Here’s where things stand in the area’s largest district:
- Home-based learning, known in the district as “eLearning,” will continue until May 29. Buildings are closed to the public until further notice. All extracurricular activities are canceled.
- Hotlines for mental health, eLearning and general questions will remain open through May 29. Hotline numbers are here.
- Food distribution will continue at 147 schools between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. and on bus routes in high-needs communities. Locations are here. The food is for all children under 18, or 21 if they have special needs. Multi-day servings of bread, milk, lunchmeat and various snacks are given out every Wednesday. Light snacks are given out every Monday.
- Summer plans under consideration include credit recovery, extended school year for students with individualized education programs, academic enrichment camps, summer bridge for struggling students, and training for employees. Some of these programs will be virtual, others could be held inside the school buildings. The district is awaiting guidelines from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
- The district is working on procedures for students to return borrowed mobile devices; and to retrieve their personal belongings. Those should be announced in a few weeks.
- All May graduations are cancelled. The district has booked the Florida State Fairgrounds, tentatively, between July 13 and July 23. If, by that time, the CDC guidelines do not allow for such large gatherings, the district will consider virtual graduations as a last resort.