TX ISD Asked To Close for Eclipse

Total Solar Eclipse
Total Solar Eclipse | Image by Anna Hoychuk/Shutterstock

Hays County Independent School District will be closed on April 8 in anticipation of a flux of visitors to the area for the solar eclipse.

An email from Hays County ISD addressed to staff and students’ parents explained that the decision to cancel classes had been made upon a recommendation from local authorities.

“The Central Texas area is expected to see a large influx of eclipse tourism, and that could put a strain on emergency response personnel who will be needed to assist with traffic control and other crowd management in parts of our county,” the email read, according to Community Impact.

“We were fortunate not to have to close school this winter as often as we had planned,” the email continued. “For staffing purposes, administration will handle this day like any other weather closure. Essential staff may be required to work or be on call.”

A spokesperson for the Hays County ISD, Tim Savoy, told Newsweek that children will sent home with “fun activities and assignments for eclipse day” along with special glasses to view the event safely.

Texas cities in the 100-mile-wide totality path have been prepping for the arrival of thousands of eclipse chasers, as covered in The Dallas Express. For example, the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden have organized an all-day solar eclipse event, while Downtown Dallas plans to hold a celebration from April 5 through 8.

Dallas will be among the first larger U.S. cities to see the total solar eclipse, with the entire event running from 12:23 p.m. to 3:02 p.m., with its maximum at 1:42 p.m. However, Ennis — some 40 miles to the south — will have one of the longest durations of totality: 4 minutes and 23 seconds.

The expected arrival of thousands of visitors in Ennis led officials to close Ennis ISD campuses on the day of the eclipse.

Some Texas officials, such as Mike Jones, Hays County’s director of the Office of Emergency Services, have also recommended that the public get food supplies and fill up their fuel tanks ahead of the eclipse to “reduce traffic flow the day of the event and manage individuals’ expectations,” according to Newsweek.

Travis County, Kendall County, and Bell County officials have already issued preemptive declarations of local disaster for April 8.

Travis County Emergency Services posted the emergency declaration on X and asked those living in unincorporated areas to register if their viewing parties exceed 50 people.

“We can’t emphasize this enough. Please expect increased traffic on April 8 and the weekend before. Reschedule appointments, run errands another day, and stay at or near home to watch the eclipse,” stated the Travis County Emergency Services post.

Support our non-profit journalism

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Continue reading on the app
Expand article