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District Utilizing Parent, Staff Survey Feedback with TEA Guidance For Plan to Re-open Campuses for 2020-2021

The afternoon of June 23, Texas Education Commissioner Mike Morath shared long-awaited guidance with all Texas superintendents by outlining the expectations for the educational environment, potential restrictions and school funding for the 2020-2021 school year.

The district’s plan to resume instruction for students, regardless of the delivery method, remains on track to begin Wednesday, Aug. 12.

“Based on feedback from our parents, our goal is face-to-face, in-person learning all day, every day provided we can meet health and safety guidelines,” said Dr. Jamie Wilson, superintendent. “If face-to-face for all at once is not possible, we will find a way to create student groups allowing for as much face-to-face instruction as possible. We won’t know the exact details until we finish gathering feedback and learn more about the current COVID-19 environment as we get closer to our first day of school.”

During the June 23 Regular Meeting, the Denton ISD Board of Trustees reviewed the recent results of a parent survey. The survey gathered 13,929 responses from parents regarding comfort level with instructional delivery methods and safety protocols. Results revealed that approximately 20 percent, or one-fifth of respondents, might select virtual learning at home for their student.

The Board’s discussion also focused the District’s priorities for a safe return which include:

  • Ensure the health, safety and well-being of students, employees and visitors.
  • Create an environment for maximum instructional delivery methods with an emphasis on face-to-face learning.
  • Provide flexibility for continuity of learning should the learning environment or configuration change.

Denton ISD is currently surveying district staff members through an online document that is open until July 1. The district seeks to gain ideas on returning to campus and safety protocols as it pertains to campus operations directly from staff members.

Based on recent parent input, Denton ISD is preparing the following opportunities for students: 

Face-to-Face Instruction – Traditional, at-school learning experience with additional safety measures implemented based on guidelines from governing entities.

Virtual Learning – A family choice to learn at home with the same expectations for learning as the traditional Face to Face model.  It is designed for students who are not planning to return to an in-person school setting, even if governing entities deem it satisfactory to do so, will be taught online by a Denton ISD teacher or another online platform.

Remote Learning – A robust learning environment for short term interruptions to the school year.  Students transition to classes online while at home on a regular school schedule during unsafe conditions, allowing for an easier transition to face-to-face instruction when conditions are deemed safe, or continuity of learning should students need to be quarantined for short periods.

Ultimately, feedback from our community and staff, alongside guidance from governing entities, will help determine to what degree Denton ISD will make face-to-face instruction available to all.  Also, families will be able to make a choice about their child’s education and whether or not to send their child to campus.

“Our families can expect to hear more details of our re-opening plans during the first few weeks of July,” said Dr. Jamie Wilson, superintendent. “We will then open registration during our traditional time, in July, so parents can share their desire for their student based on their family’s needs.”

In the coming weeks, Denton ISD will provide parents the opportunity to register for school, via an online platform, and indicate their intended model of instruction for their student. Parents will receive more information regarding the virtual option before committing to a decision.  Families can expect emails with additional information and are encouraged to continue to look for information on and the District’s social media accounts.