Posted by Dr. Jim Hattabaugh on 9/23/2020

Return to the Classroom or Not? That is the question.

The DISD School Board at my recommendation, voted to remain in on-line learning and cancel all athletics/activities until January 2021. This is a challenging decision in many ways.

Remaining on-line, places a burden on all stakeholders.  Parents are asked to take more of a hands-on role in educating their children, it asks students to isolate when all they want to do is socialize and visit with friends, it asks teachers to use a medium of instruction that few were trained for, it places a burden on our delivery system and those that make it work.

We all agree that face to face learning is the best way to educate our students. With this in mind, we must weigh the benefits versus the risks involved. The risks are apparent to all of us. We are in a pandemic with COVID 19 that has shown to have a harsher effect on Native Americans and Latino populations than for others. Is risking the lives of our children and community members worth the risk?

We have all observed the inconsistencies at all levels on how to deal with this pandemic. For instance, while we could re-open our schools at the K-5 level with restrictions, DISD along with many other schools in New Mexico, chose not to go down this path for the safety of our community.

With all of these considerations in mind and concerns about the overall health of everyone, it is not an easy decision. But after weighing all the possibilities, ramifications and what we know about this disease, it was clear that the safety of all concerned was the right decision.

Please continue to work closely with your students and teachers as we all continue to learn what is the best way to reach and educate our students!


Dr. Jim Hattabaugh,