KEMP, Texas — This story will be continuously updated.
Several more North Texas districts are closing this week due to the rapid rise in COVID cases.
Students will get long weekends as the districts deal with cases.
Earlier this week, Rio Vista canceled classes due to staff shortages, while Plano and Garland ISDs dealt with a shortage of bus drivers.
Argyle ISD schools will be closed on Friday, Jan. 14 due to staffing shortages from COVID-19 positive cases.
Students and staff will return to regular schedules on Tuesday, Jan. 18, following the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday on Monday.
Boyd ISD, northwest of Fort Worth, will close classes on Thursday for the next several days and will resume classes on Jan. 18. School officials in a letter to parents said they've seen "a significant increase in cases across the district."
Birdville ISD officials said Friday that the district's schools will be closed on Tuesday, Jan. 18, and Wednesday, Jan. 19.
Due to the rising number of COVID-19 cases and the impact it is having on daily operations, all Corsicana ISD schools and buildings will be closed Tuesday, Jan. 18 and Wednesday, Jan. 19.
Students and staff are scheduled to return to campuses on Thursday, Jan. 20.
Due to a staffing shortage, Forney ISD said it will close all campuses Friday, Jan. 14 through the MLK holiday on Monday, Jan. 17.
Officials with the district said they are "unable to operate campuses with over 109 unfilled staff absences due to various reasons."
Classes will resume normal operations on Tuesday, Jan. 18.
Kaufman ISD campuses will be closed to students Friday, the district said, due to the number of absences since schools returned from break.
Teachers and staff will still report to their classrooms on campus, and scheduled extracurricular activities will still take place, the district said.
Over the long weekend, campuses will undergo a deep cleaning and classes will resume on Tuesday, in order to honor the federal Martin Luther King Jr. holiday.
Due to critical staffing shortages, Keller ISD said it will be closing Bear Creek Intermediate School and North Riverside Elementary School on Friday, Jan. 14.
"Our staff has done everything possible to remain open through staffing challenges caused by the current surge of positive COVID-19 cases, but at this time, Bear Creek and North Riverside no longer have enough staff or substitutes to continue to sustain operations," the district said.
The campuses will not need to make up the day since the closure is accounted for in our instructional calendar. All schools reopen on Tuesday, Jan. 18.
Kemp ISD announced Tuesday that classes are canceled for Thursday and Friday as positive COVID cases rise rapidly and significantly.
On Tuesday, the district reported 61 active COVID cases. The district has a student enrollment of 1,647 as of September.
Extracurricular activities will continue as scheduled.
Staff members will continue to work from district facilities. Students won't be required to make up the days.
The district is in Kaufman and Henderson counties.
Krum ISD said it will close its campuses on Thursday, Jan. 13 and Friday, Jan. 14, as the number of COVID cases across the district continues to rise. All extra-curricular activities will be canceled, as well.
Remote instruction will not be held, and students will not need to make up the missed instruction, the district said.
School will resume Tuesday, Jan. 18 the day after the Monday MLK Holiday.
After initially only closing a select few elementary schools, Mansfield ISD is now moving to close all schools and buildings from Friday, Jan. 14 through Tuesday, Jan. 18.
"The high number of staff who are out, combined with a shortage of substitute teachers, is putting such a high strain on our day-to-day operations that it is currently not possible to provide a safe, productive learning environment for our students and staff," the district said in a statement on Thursday.
As of Wednesday, MISD said it had 750 students and 195 staff with confirmed, active COVID cases and that number is rapidly rising. In addition to those who have tested positive, the district said it has a large number of students and staff absent, either because of other illnesses or because they are quarantining pending COVID-19 test results.
The district said custodial staff will implement "COVID-19 deep cleaning protocol" before students and staff return on Tuesday, Jan. 18.
During the closure, Mansfield ISD said students will not be required to attend virtual learning, since the district has built in that time. However, the district said if future closures happen, makeup days might be needed.
High school UIL activities are scheduled to continue.
Due to a rise in COVID cases among students and staff, Maypearl ISD has announced that campuses will be closed Thursday, Jan. 13, and Friday, Jan. 14.
At this time, UIL activities have not been canceled.
The district said students will return to campuses on Tuesday, Jan. 18.
With more than 15% of its staff absent, Mesquite ISD will close Tuesday and Wednesday, Jan. 18 and 19.
"The strain of covering classes in the midst of a severe substitute shortage has taken a tremendous toll on our staff members who are able to report to work, but our ability to safely monitor students in our care is quickly becoming unmanageable," the district said.
By announcing this step today, Mesquite ISD said it hoped to give families time to arrange for necessary childcare, while the emergency closure will give the district five days to regroup.
Student activities will continue as scheduled during the closure.
Northwest ISD will cancel classes for all campuses on Friday because of a "significant staff shortage" caused by COVID, the district tweeted Thursday.
The district said it has 1,155 total positive cases reported as of Wednesday, including students and staff.
The district said that no remote learning will take place these days and no makeup dates would be required, as they will be used similarly to inclement weather days.
School will resume on Wednesday, Jan. 19.
Pilot Point ISD
Due to a rise in positive COVID cases among students and staffing issues, Pilot Point ISD said schools will be closed from Thursday, Jan. 13 through Martin Luther King Day on Monday, Jan. 17.
Students will return to campuses at normal start times on Tuesday, Jan. 18.
The district said as of Tuesday, Jan. 11, at least 16% of its instructional staff was out due to COVID.
“Our principals are struggling to cover classes, and we know that instruction is suffering,” the district said in a statement.
The district said it these additional days off were built into the calendar this year, and there’s no need to worry over remote learning.
Maintenance will be spraying, cleaning and disinfecting campuses over this time off.
Red Oak ISD
Classes are canceled at Red Oak ISD Friday due to rapidly increasing COVID cases and staffing shortages in every operational function, the district said.
The district's COVID dashboard said Wednesday that there were 81 active student cases and 43 active staff cases. The district's enrollment is 6,351 as of September.
It will be an in-person staff workday, the district said. Staff members are being asked to work in their classrooms or offices alone and refrain from any group gatherings including meals together.
"We apologize to our families for the inconvenience but feel this decision is in the best interest of Red Oak ISD students and staff," the district said.
Students will not have to make up the instructional days. The district is closed Monday for the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday. Red Oak is in northern Ellis County.
Classes are canceled at Venus ISD Thursday, Jan. 13, and Friday, Jan. 14, due to an increase in COVID-19 cases among students and staff, the district said.
The district also announced the cancellation of extracurricular activities for those days too.
Monday, Jan. 17, is Martin Luther King Day, so students and staff will return to classes at normal time on Tuesday, Jan. 18.
White Settlement ISD
White Settlement ISD schools will be closed Friday, Jan. 14 through Tuesday, Jan. 18 due to staffing shortages.
The district said more than 150 team members are out currently due to illness, COVID-19 exposure or day care closure, and the number of student absences is at a high for the school year.
Students will not have to make up the days or participate in remote learning.
Classes will resume Wednesday, Jan. 19.
COVID cases in North Texas
Many districts are experiencing staff shortages during this wave of COVID cases. Earlier this week, Rio Vista ISD canceled classes on Monday and Tuesday due to a lack of staffing caused by COVID-19, officials said Sunday.
Rio Vista ISD said the district held a testing site for staff on Sunday. Those testing results and the lack of substitute teachers led to the decision.