Story

May 11, 2021

Ops Appreciation Week May 10-14

KIPP Texas Public Schools is excited to celebrate Ops Appreciation Week May 10-14, honoring the 300 unsung heroes on our Operations Team who handle the logistics that support teaching and learning so our schools and offices can thrive.

When the pandemic hit, it impacted not just our classrooms, but also our cafeterias, nurses’ offices, and school buses. Our Ops team was on the front lines, pioneering innovative solutions statewide and showing an unwavering commitment to our Little and Big KIPPsters and their families when COVID disrupted school operations and closed our schools.

When we finally could reopen, they leapt into action to keep our school buildings safe and clean, and they provided the tools and technology for a joyful, academically successful school year. 

Did you know?  Operations includes Facilities, Construction, Information Technology, Child Nutrition, School-based Operations staff, Compliance, PEIMS (Public Education Information Management System), Procurement, Transportation, and the Operations Management Team. 

Here’s a glimpse at some of their fantastic work this year.

Child Nutrition

  • Served over 1.3 million meals to KIPPsters since the start of the school year.   
  • Providing free meals to all KIPPsters regardless of income, including free healthy Grab & Go meals for our online students, AND expanded the After School Supper Program statewide, so any KIPPster in an afterschool program can have a FREE supper meal.

Facilities and Construction 

  • Led the opening of four new schools this year while juggling 11 construction projects—which all ran on time despite the pandemic and Winter Storm Uri!
  • Modifying eight campuses to welcome rising grades in all four regions this fall, AND building a permanent high school/gym and primary/middle school at the Journey and Mosaic campuses in Houston, respectively, AND renovating Paul Quinn College building to house KIPP Oak Cliff Academy High School in Dallas. 
  • Keeping us safe by overseeing campus traffic logistics, classrooms relocations, flooding mitigation, security, and much more.  

IT

  • Completed Wireless Access Point (WAP) retro-fit project in Houston to support 1:1 digital/Chromebooks for students.
  • All Houston sites (1,400 WAPs) now meet the KIPP Texas standard, providing consistent internet services for all teachers and students, with similar upgrades scheduled in the other regions. 
  • Upgraded the statewideGoogle platform, which empowers teachers for both in-person and virtual instruction via enhanced video options (e.g., breakout rooms, Q&A/polling, and better security protocols).

Compliance

  • Evaluated the TEA’s rapidly changing guidance for schools’ return to in-person instruction leading up to the start of school.
  • Trouble-shot the impacts and drafted waivers to delay the first day of school, for a strong, safe start to the school year.  

PEIMS (Public Education Information Management System)

  • Navigated countless changes in virtual and in-person attendance, guaranteeing the accuracy of our average daily attendance and thus safeguarding our state funding.  

School-based Operations teams 

  • Handled numerous safety and logistics initiatives to free up our School Leaders and teachers to focus on instruction every single day at our 59 schools. 
  • Managing student arrival/dismissal, cafeteria service, transitions, and rapid-testing protocols in schools and extracurriculars…it’s all just a “regular” day for this team! 

Transportation 

  • Coordinating 200 school buses statewide to ferry our Little KIPPsters to and from school safely and on time, every day—plus rolling out a new bus-tracking app for parents!
  • Secured a statewide partnership that supplies all buses with A/C, improved safety features, and COVID protocols.

Procurement and Purchasing 

  • Obtained an inventory of crucial supplies (e.g., masks, hand sanitizer, and PPE) to keep us all safe.

Operations Management 

  • Masterminded our new Team & Family on the Great 8 protocols, now being replicated across KIPP and other charter districts nationwide! 
  • Led our boots-on-the-ground emergency response via recovery fairs, community partnerships, and ultimately, by creating the KIPPTexasCares program. 
  • Mobilized to help us rise together during inclement weather and local emergencies.  

Where would we be without our talented Ops Team’s dedication and hard work?  We surely could not run our current schools or open new ones, safely handle the needs of our Team & Family and communities, or work and learn remotely or in-person.  We invite you to share in the celebration by following our Facebook and Instagram posts.

This Ops Appreciation Week, we celebrate and thank our Ops Team heroes! #OpsDontStop! #WeLoveOps