Mesquite ISD is the latest school district in North Texas to cancel classes at all campuses due to an overwhelming number of staff absences.
The district announced Friday morning that they would keep campuses closed for two days following the Monday MLK Jr. Day holiday -- at this point classes are expected to resume on Thursday, Jan. 20.
"Due to an unprecedented number of staff absences today -- more than 15% -- and similar numbers already entered for Tuesday of next week, Mesquite ISD will close Tuesday and Wednesday, Jan. 18 and 19," the district said. "The strain of covering classes in the midst of a severe substitute shortage has taken a tremendous toll on our staff members who are able to report to work, but our ability to safely monitor students in our care is quickly becoming unmanageable."
The district didn't say what led to the staffing problems, but several districts around North Texas have closed schools or shut down all campuses after reporting severe staffing issues due to the recent surge of COVID-19 cases.
"This emergency closure will give us five days to regroup, stay home to get well, and deep clean our campuses and facilities," the district said.
The district said they were announcing their plan Friday to hopefully give families time to plan for childcare next week.
While student extracurricular activities have not been canceled at this time the district urged all families to "take all available precautionary measures to safeguard and support your family's health."
District officials said the missed days will have to be made up at a later time and that information would be released soon about makeup days.