MCALLEN, Texas — The Texas American Federation of Teachers (AFT) is launching a new website that tracks COVID-19 cases, and unsafe working conditions in Texas schools.
The organization says they launched the website after learning the state would be providing district wide data, and not data on individual campuses.
Texas AFT says with the state requiring district to report COVID cases beginning last week, they were not sure when the information would be made public, and added the information is needed to stop the spread of the virus.
The website StopTheSpreadTX.school is open to the public and vistors can view reports of COVID cases at specific campuses. Users can also submit reports, including reporting unsafe working conditions. You can also remain annoymus when submitting a report.
When reports come in they are linked to evidence, which can be an e-mail, web posting from administration, or even news reports. The evidence can also be viewed by users, and is verified by AFT staff as reports come in.
Reports are then uploaded onto the website on a map of the state.
“You can’t stop the spread of COVID-19 if you don’t have the information you need on outbreaks, or on dangerous workplace situations that can lead to an outbreak.” Says Zeph Capo, Texas AFT President
Local union McAllen AFT says this information can give parents peace of mind.
“It’s great because as a school employee, I want to know what I’m being exposed to right? As a parent, I want to know if I’m sending my child back, what she is going to be exposed to.” Says Sylvia Tanguma, President, McAllen AFT.
Officials with the organization also say this online tool is giving a voice to teachers, school employees, and the community to keep them safe and monitor what is really happening.
If you would like to learn more about the website, click here, for the full press release.