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Some districts scrap COVID dashboards, other online tools ahead of new school year

Districts are still required to report active COVID cases to the state.

HOUSTON — Chavez High School teacher Coretta Mallet-Fontenot says she's excited, yet nervous, about the new school year.

RELATED: 'I'm anticipating a repeat of last fall' | Growing concerns about upcoming school year due to mask rules, vaccination rates among kids

“This year, it looks like everybody’s going to be face-to-face 100%,” Mallet-Fontenot said.

At this point, she won’t be able to as easily know what’s going on at her campus, or any others, after HISD retired its color-coded COVID-19 gauge system.

RELATED: Houston ISD superintendent outlines COVID protocols heading into the new school year

“I would hope that the district would reconsider that,” Mallet-Fontenot said. “While it did have its flaws, I do think it was a good tool, you know, for general knowledge about the number of cases.”

Aldine, Klein, Pasadena and Spring independent school districts retired their online COVID dashboards, as well.

Clear Creek, Cy-Fair and Katy ISDs plan to start tracking when the fall semester begins.

Alief ISD and Fort Bend ISD said their dashboards are still up and running.

“As you all know, we’ve seen a raise, a rise, in the wrong direction most recently,” HISD superintendent Millard House II said over the weekend.

RELATED: 'Wrong direction' | HISD superintendent discusses COVID-19 concerns as families continue to weigh vaccinations

House said the district continues to work with health authorities for the latest COVID-related information.

“To ensure we have a strong and healthy start to our school year,” House said.

Dashboards or not, districts are still required to report confirmed COVID-19 cases to the state which maintains an online dashboard. Mallet-Fontenot fears it’s something they’ll definitely be doing, including on her campus.

“You know, being that they’re teenagers, and masks are not mandated and vaccines are not mandated,” Mallet-Fontenot said. “I’m just concerned that they won’t necessarily, you know, take their safety in as high a consideration as I will.”

It’s possible districts that retired their dashboards and other resources could bring them back since so much remains fluid and detailed reopening plans are still in the works.

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