All Things COVID-19: Regional Updates


Taking the lives of thousands and living millions in quarantine, whether self-isolated or in hospitals, the coronavirus has taken hold of the U.S, with the number of cases reaching number one, passing Italy and China. 

The Numbers: The United States has a total of 1,622,114 confirmed cases and 65,776 total deaths.



As cases increased in Dallas County, GISD decided to extend the initial prolonged spring break indefinitely, however after advised by the governor, the school has been closed for the 2019-2020 school year. The decision was made after the situation, using the GISD Infectious Disease Leveled Response Plan, reached Level Red meaning all district and campus sites were to be closed for more than 14 days.

The GISD website has daily updates as well as updates on Twitter and Facebook. Many resources can be accessed through the district websites or links below.

Many anticipated school events and competitions have been canceled as not only Dallas County but the state of Texas grapples with the influx of cases. HOSA state competitions, V.A.S.E state art competitions, and all UIL competitions have all been canceled or postponed. 

As of right now, teachers, through virtual meetings, have set up online learning curriculums for students which started on March 23rd where digital work and assignments are to be completed from home. It is important to keep an eye out for posts made by teachers and faculty in upcoming days through email or other educational platforms such as Google Classroom or Edmodo. For students without internet and/or technology access, links posted above and a technology survey by GISD can help provide resources. There is currently an At-Home learning system provided by GISD to assist guardians with providing resources for academics, mental health and more.

  • GISD Revised Grading System and Expectations 
    • The fifth cycle (six weeks) will be absorbed into the sixth cycle (grades from Feb.18- May 21)
      • any failing grade from Feb.18-May.21 can be made up
      • any work will be accepted with no late penalty by May 18
    • All grades taken from March 16 to April 10 will not be recorded
    • All grades will be weighted equally and all assignments will be in the classwork/daily work category
    • The 2020 spring semester will not be counted on students’ GPAs but will be on their official transcripts
    • Click here for more details on the updated grading system


  • CollegeBoard AP Exams: Due to schools across the country and world closing, CollegeBoard has made changes to the usual structure of AP Exams this year.
  • Updates: Collegeboard has created a full-length page of updates about each exam from the specific structure, times and different dates available. 

Click here for more information:

  • Structure: Instead of the usual three and half hour long test, students will now take a 45-minute free-response exam. CollegeBoard has also shaved off units that were set to be taught from mid-March to early May for many students thus cutting portions off the AP Exams. To see what topics for each exam have been taken off visit the website linked above (CollegeBoard AP Exams) and scroll down to see the full list. 
  • Place and Time: Each exam will be taken at home on two test dates for each exam.
  • Access and Preparation: Recognizing the lost class time for many students, CollegeBoard, beginning on March 25th, is to cast free-live AP review sessions for AP exams at different times. CollegeBoard is also allowing students to opt-out of the exam with no charge. The exams will also be accessible through any computer, tablet, and smartphone. 
    • Since many students may not have internet or technology access, CollegeBoard has said they will invest to close the digital divide. Fill out this form to indicate such needs to CollegeBoard:
  • CollegeBoard SAT Testing: As large gatherings and schools have been restricted, the CollegeBoard has canceled all March and May test dates for the SAT. All refunds will be provided for those who already paid to take the test and new dates to test will also be provided.


From the Governor’s Office: 

  • Restrictions: Gov. Greg Abbott, on March 19, declared an executive order on Texas of public health disaster and has declared ALL public gatherings such as restaurants, bars, gyms, and schools to be closed until May 20 in efforts of stopping the spread of COVID-19. The state is currently working with hotels in making them quarantine ready if needed to separate people room by room to reduce COVID-19 rapid spread. People are also not allowed to visit nursing homes unless they are a certified medical professional. 
  • Primary Elections: The governor delayed the May 26 primary runoffs until July as social gatherings of more than 10 people were banned. 
  • Hospitals and Healthcare: All surgeries and medical services that are not medically necessary or urgent care to be postponed so resources can be directed to patients testing positive for the virus. Regulations of only treating one person a room were also suspended. 
  • Economy and Businesses: The governor announced on Friday that small businesses in Texas affected by the virus can apply for long-term-low-interest loans from the U.S Small Business Administration 
  • To read more about all the responses from the governors read here:


  • Dallas County 
    • The Numbers: Dallas County now has the second most amount of cases in Texas with a confirmed amount of 8,477 cases and 207 deaths
    • Dallas County Office:
      • All jury trials for Dallas criminal courts, civil courts, and Justice of the Peace courts have been canceled. 
      • Face to face transactions for Dallas County Tax offices is also closed.
      • Restrictions: Similar to the statewide ban, Dallas County has closed all bars, restaurants, lounges, gyms, and theaters as well as the Dallas Independent School District. 
      • Leading the number of cases in Texas, Dallas county has called in healthcare workers of the National Guard to assist tracking those who had contact with patients testing positive
      • Testing Centers: There will be two testing centers for Dallas County however, to be tested, there are many qualifications to meet. 
        • One site: American Airlines Center in Downtown Dallas opening on March 21st  at 8 a.m.
        • Second site: Ellis Davis Field House in Red Bird opening at 8 a.m. on March 22nd.
        • CURRENT QUALIFICATIONS: Restrictions on age and occupation have been lifted but you must show symptoms of a temperature 99.6 or higher, shortness of breath, and cough. The results should come in about three days.
        • If you are denied access to testing but wish to be tested, contact your healthcare provider. Other places allow testing only upon your doctor’s request; speak to your doctor for more details.