On June 14, Houston seniors will be able to experience a virtual graduation ceremony. However, if your child isn’t graduating you might get the feeling that school students are in limbo. COVID-19 has shaken up the education sector and has left people wondering what that means for kids in school. The HISD is considering a variety of options for the coming year, including the option for online-only instruction.
In a statement, the district said that they are considering all options for the upcoming school year. “The district will be prepared to continue educating all students virtually through distance learning, if necessary,” according to the statement.
The statement also added, “if COVID-19 conditions allow and guidance from local, state, and federal health officials is provided, the district will be prepared to welcome students back to campuses or operate in a hybrid model, with both distance and in-person learning occurring simultaneously.”
During a press conference on May 15, Grenita Lathan, the HISD interim superintendent stated that year-round classes are also being considered. Another option may be to extend classes an additional 30-minutes each day. During the press conference Lathan also outlined recommendations that would waive minimal attendance for class credit. However, changes to the academic school year would need to be approved by the HISD Board of Trustees.
As HISD has not yet adopted the District of Innovation (Year-Round System) they are limited in their options when it comes to choosing the school year start date. According to the Texas Education Agency, the options include moving to a year-long school model, adding one month of school to the traditional 180-day school year, or spreading the school year out and including intermittent breaks rather than a summer vacation.