Denton ISD Partners with PediPlace to Provide Healthcare to Students
Denton ISD’s Board of School Trustees approved a partnership with PediPlace, a local 501(c)3 nonprofit pediatric healthcare company, at a Board of School Trustees meeting on Tuesday, Aug. 22. The partnership will allow the district to offer a clinic that provides quality care to students who currently lack access to care.
Through this partnership, Denton ISD will provide a location for the clinic, which will be centrally located at a currently unoccupied space within Fred Moore High School, in a neighborhood deeply rooted in the Denton community. The clinic will serve students who are insured through Medicaid, the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) or who are uninsured.
“Simply put, if kids aren’t in school because they are sick, they are not learning,” said Denton ISD Superintendent of Schools Dr. Jamie Wilson. “If kids aren’t in school, they aren’t learning math and reading.
“Our primary mission is to ensure all students receive an exceptional educational experience. We stand committed to removing barriers that may hinder our educators from providing a free and appropriate education to all students of this community.”
The clinic’s location near a Denton County Transportation Authority (DCTA) bus stop will allow Denton ISD parents easy access to services during the hours of operation, as a parent or guardian must accompany students who are in need of treatment. Denton ISD will not provide transportation to the clinic.
Additionally, the clinic being at a centrally-located campus such as Fred Moore ensures it is easily accessible and results in minimal disruptions to learning. The clinic is scheduled to open in early 2024.
“One of the great outcomes of this partnership will be reduced absences,” said Denton ISD Director of Health Services Nicole Goodman. “Many of our students are unable to get into a care provider. Something that should take a day turns into three or four days because it is difficult to get into a primary care physician, or they are uninsured. It is leading to a lot more absences at our most at-risk campuses.”
During the 2022-2023 school year, PediPlace’s clinic in Lewisville ISD had 3,944 office visits. Of those, 1,144 patients were from the Denton ISD area. Twelve percent of the Denton ISD area is uninsured.
A number of organizations in the Denton community have already supported the partnership, including the City of Denton, Lewisville morning Rotary Club, Lewisville noon Rotary Club, Flower Mound Rotary Club, Highland Village Rotary Club, Cross Timbers Rotary Club, Kiwanis Club, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas and Audacy.
The City of Denton has pledged $230,000 over the next three years to help support personnel, infrastructure and systems. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas has granted $25,000 for uninsured families and parents to receive preventative care for newborns to 15 months old. Rotary Clubs have committed $11,500 to help cover the cost of various medical supplies.
“Keeping students healthy and in the classroom is a driving force behind an impactful learning experience,” said Area Superintendent Dr. Charlene Parham. “It is about providing access for parents to get their children the care that they need.