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Fort Worth ISD Students Can Still Get Meals As Online Classes Restart

Bill Zeeble
At Eastern Hills High School in Fort Worth ISD, food trucks made rounds at some schools to provide free meals to students in March.

Students who rely on school for meals could still pick up food when classes went online in March. That program will continue as the pandemic and virtual classes wear on.

Fort Worth ISD will continue to provide meals to students, even though they won’t be returning to the classroom.

The first day of school is Sept. 8, and the district plans to offer four weeks of online instruction. Students K-12 will have four hours of class per day and preschoolers will have three.

Superintendent Kent Scribner told the City Council on Tuesday that the goal is to make every neighborhood school a food pick-up site.

"That does two things. It ensures that students are getting breakfast and lunch, but it also allows us a touch-point to be able to interact with parents,” he said.

Social workers will be at food pick-up sites to offer support where needed.

Scribner said the district has given out almost a million meals since the COVID-19 pandemic unexpectedly sent students home in March.

He added that if COVID-19 numbers continue to trend downwards, students could return to some in-person instruction before the end of the four-week online instruction period.

“Hopefully we won’t see a spike after Labor Day,” he said, referencing the upcoming holiday weekend.

Scribner said the district is trying to avoid the fate of Keller ISD, which reportedly sent Indian Springs Middle School staff and almost 145 fifth graders into quarantine after three staff members tested positive for COVID-19, just a few days into the school year.

Miranda Suarez is KERA’s Tarrant County accountability reporter. Before coming to North Texas, she was the Lee Ester News Fellow at Wisconsin Public Radio, where she covered statewide news from the capital city of Madison. Miranda is originally from Massachusetts and started her public radio career at WBUR in Boston.