Districts across the nation are reconsidering their virtual learning options. Read more about school districts in Texas who are doing the same and why.
- Austin students will have the option to attend classes virtually.
- COVID concerns led to decision.
- Virtual option “will be for a limited number of students that may not be eligible for the COVID vaccine.”
Which students are eligible for virtual learning in Austin?
- Students in K-6.
- Number of slots and qualifying criteria TBA.
Cost of virtual learning
- Austin could lose state funding for students enrolled in the virtual option during the fall.
- Using pandemic-related federal funds under discussion, but may not be allowed – more to come.
What Austin parents need to know
- Parents have until Aug. 6 to express interest in the virtual learning option.
- The new virtual option will look different from last year’s.
- Virtual students will receive instruction from separate staff
- Teachers don’t have to teach both online and in-person.
- Students will remain connected to their home campus.
- Students with medical needs who are confined to their home or a hospital for at least a month could also qualify for an existing remote learning program with a doctor’s note.
- These students receive weekly visits from teachers to get support for a minimum of four hours.
- District may modernize the the program with added virtual support.
Additional COVID-19 protocols
- For on campus learning, the district is recommending everyone wear masks indoors and stay home if they feel sick, regardless of vaccine status.
- The district will also continue contact tracing, updating its COVID-19 dashboard and use outdoor spaces for activities such as lunch.
- Students who need to quarantine would receive support and some possible virtual instruction from central office staff.
Other local districts’ plans
- Round Rock school district also recently reversed course and announced a K-6 virtual option for unvaccinated students.
- Leander school district announced it would use its federal coronavirus funds to create a virtual option for a limited number of students in PK-12.
Full article HERE
Related article – As Delta Variant Spreads, Twice as Many K-12 Leaders Pivot to Hybrid Learning