Phone and internet services restored to SISD schools after outage


Forty-five schools in the Socorro Independent School District were sent back in time after lunch on Monday.

The district says a day of learning wasn’t stopped without what may seem like modern day necessities.

"A vehicle - we don't know what kind of vehicle it was - hit one of our cable lines in the Socorro area,” Hector Reyna, SISD’s chief technology officer, said. “It's an aerial cable that every company has it that way. Our provider was done through those cables."

Phones and internet were not working at nearly every school in the district.

"Teachers didn't really have a place to put in the grades so they had to put them in by hand,"Fabian Sarinana, Montwood student, said.

"Our teachers use the internet to take notes and stuff,” Gia Yepiz, Montwood student, said. “So like us not being able to take notes was hard."

"In a lot of my computer classes, it was pretty much a free day,” Larry Torres, Montwood student said. “So, we didn't have to do anything because they require internet."

Students may have had to put away their keyboards the rest of the day.

"Nothing changed in the class. We went back to the traditional classroom,” Reyna said. “There was still teaching, learning happening. Teachers still had access to projectors and the computers."

These outages don’t happen too often but, it’s something the district is capable of handling.

“These things happen. Somebody cuts a fiber. It happens with every entity whether schools or businesses,” Reyna said. “Somebody cuts a fiber and we have to prepare but we have to prepare to go back to old school.”

The district's central office called students' parents to tell them the outage might last up to 36 to 48 hours.

But it also credits social media for posts like these to let parents know when something is wrong.

"They could contact their own child through social media and they can see what's going on," Sarinana said.

"Social media helps with everything,” Torres said. “Everybody is on it. It helps to get any word out."

The district says it was able to keep working phone and internet lines up and running at its central office. That’s because they have secure lines called “redundant lines,” to prevent that from happening.

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