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TEA provides additional guidance, ConnectedLearning, Face-to-Face still options

Following updated guidance from the Texas Education Agency (TEA) on Friday, July 17, Denton ISD will continue planning efforts to begin instruction for students on Wednesday, Aug. 26, regardless of the delivery method. TEA announced that local districts could lengthen the time frame they will allow local districts to begin school online for the 2020-21 year to four weeks. 


The agency added that a school district could extend its exclusively virtual learning start for an additional four weeks, for a total of eight weeks, with approval from its school board and a TEA waiver. TEA also mandated that school leaders must still offer in-person classes to any students who do not have computers and reliable internet access at home. 


“We understand that our families want to make the best decision for their child, and we want to support them with options as we work to provide a safe and healthy learning environment,” said Dr. Jamie Wilson, superintendent of schools. “Whether we can start face-to-face or virtually, we need our families to complete the registration process so we can have an accurate picture of what both will look like for next year.”


Currently, Denton ISD is hosting online registration for families, and have asked that parents designate whether they plan for their student to return to campus for face-to-face instruction or ConnectedLearning, the district’s virtual learning platform. Should the district change these plans, that will be directly communicated to families and staff.


The district will continue to collaborate with the Denton County leaders, including the Denton County Health Department, before making any decision to only offer virtual learning for all students. 


Last Friday, July 10, the Board of Trustees voted to move the start date for students back two weeks to provide extra time for staff training and the implementation of additional health/safety protocols.


Denton ISD and other Texas school districts are awaiting guidance from the University Interscholastic League regarding any possible changes to the start of extracurricular activities, including sports and fine arts. 


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