AUSTIN (KXAN) — Some students and teachers have returned to the classroom, but to keep them safe, school districts have had to make sure they are well-stocked with personal protective equipment.
“We hold a large inventory of all of the PPE that goes out to all the different campuses,” said Linda Coronado, assistant director of housekeeping with the Austin Independent School District.
The staff at AISD’s service center, where the PPE is stored, is in charge of distributing masks, face shields, hand sanitizer and other items used to help keep students and teachers safe.
Coronado says getting masks was problematic when the COVID-19 pandemic first arrived, but they were able to later get the supplies they needed.
“We were able to get with several vendors and accumulate 3.1 million disposable masks,” Coronado said.
“We had masks donated by the department of emergency management, over 510,000 donated to us from them of the disposable adult masks. We had 96,000 donated to us of the kids disposable masks.”
The district already had some masks in stock and received more donations, as well.
About 3.5 million disposable masks have been given out to schools across the district. The district distributed the masks based on enrollment at each school.
“We sent them enough to last them three months at each campus,” Coronado said.
The district has also sent out about 140,000 washable/reusable masks and about 270,000 face shields. They also distributed 55,000 desk shields.
With more students expected to return to campuses in the coming weeks, will the district have enough PPE moving forward?
“I am not worried at all,” Coronado said. “I think that we have worked really really hard at making sure we ordered enough.”
The district has also sent out more than 61,000 18.6-ounce bottles of hand sanitizer.
They also have about 6,000 N95 masks that they can distribute.
Disposable and washable mask that have been distributed:
- 2,807,989 adult size disposable masks
- 741,830 child size disposable masks
- 131,500 adult size washable masks
- 11,000 child size washable masks
Face shields that have been distributed:
- 98,200 adult size
- 175,000 child size
When a campus gets down to the last 30% of what was sent, they can contact the district help desk and request more PPE.