More than 600,000 students in the Houston area returned to school Monday after a two-week hiatus caused by flooding and damage from Hurricane Harvey.
The Houston Chronicle reports that 10 of the region's 15 largest districts were back in action: Houston, Cypress-Fairbanks, Katy, Pasadena, Alief, Clear Creek, Spring, Spring Branch, Lamar and Goose Creek. About 20 districts resumed classes last week.
Houston, the largest school district in Texas, began the 2017-18 school year Monday at 243 of its 284 campuses. The remaining 41 schools are expected to re-open in the next two weeks. Students at seven of those schools are expected to attend different campuses because their assigned schools sustained flood damage.
"This is going to be a year of not only incredible academic achievement, it's going to be a year of healing," Superintendent Richard Carranza says.
Carranza says about 270 teachers were affected by flooding, and some were unable to return Monday. In many of those cases, staff members from schools that haven't opened yet were filling in for co-workers.
At the Cypress-Fairbanks district, the state's third-largest, students returned to largely unaffected buildings. Only one campus, Moore Elementary School, has been temporarily closed as repairs are made. Those students are attending classes at a vacant campus about two miles away.
The Katy district has two schools temporarily shuttered because of flood damage. Students from Creech Elementary, near the heavily flooded Cinco Ranch neighborhood, traveled a mile up the road to a University of Houston satellite campus building. To the northeast, issues with the water system at Bear Creek Elementary School sent students to the district's newest secondary school, Paetow High, about 12 miles away.