Dear Partners and Friends:
As we continue to monitor Coronavirus (COVID-19) developments closely, we want you to know the health and welfare of our students, families, and our staff is our top priority. CIS – Bay Area is very aware of how the COVID-19 pandemic will impact our students and families living in poverty. With this in mind, CIS – Bay Area has developed plans to continue operations and support our students, families, and employees as COVID-19 developments unfold.
The premise of CIS – Bay Area’s service model is based on being in schools. During this period of mandatory school closures and the recently implemented Stay At Home orders of Harris and Galveston counties, CIS – Bay Area must be flexible and adapt services for our students and families based on the current conditions in our community and recommendations from the districts we serve.
To maintain operations and support our students and families, CIS – Bay Area staff have transitioned to working remotely. Initially our primary focus is assessing needs and connecting students and families to available community resources. Our Student Support Specialists are reaching out to students and families by phone, email, and mail to let them know that we are here for them and will help in any way we can during this unprecedented crisis. This includes working with families in understanding issues they are facing in regards to unemployment, evictions, basic needs assistance, and access to healthcare. In addition, Student Support Specialists are checking on the emotional well-being of students and encouraging them to complete their academic work.
Many of our students will experience disruptions to their education, limited access to technology, food insecurity, lack of access to medical care, financial challenges for working parents and families, and more. Our children and communities need us to meet them where they are. Our staff is already working on innovative solutions to provide additional services and collaborating with the school districts and our nonprofit partners to identify and address the greatest needs now, and in the coming months.
For 30 years, CIS – Bay Area has supported Clear Creek and Dickinson ISD students with dropout prevention programming, often through times of extraordinary hardship and uncertainty. While our current circumstances are unique, we will adapt and persevere to ensure that Clear Creek and Dickinson students and families have the support they need during this crisis.
With best wishes,
Peter C. Wuenschel, PhD