Spring ISD students will be returning to school virtually this year on Aug. 17 as part of a plan to keep students and staff safe from COVID-19 by spending at least the first four weeks learning from home.
“We know this year is very different from our traditional start to the school year,” said Spring ISD Superintendent Dr. Rodney E. Watson. “We’re still very excited about seeing all of our students on Aug. 17 when they log in for their classes.”
By the start of school, all campuses are working hard to get students and their families ready for the new school year by distributing Chromebooks, hosting virtual town hall meetings with parents and distributing schedules for the online school day.
Teachers are back at work also preparing for the virtual start to the school year, with plans to either work from home or their classrooms. To help educators get ready, a full slate of virtual professional development classes are being offered on everything from curriculum updates to tips for using Schoology, the district’s learning management system.
“Everyone is working very hard to ensure a strong start to our school year,” said Mark Miranda, executive chief of District Operations. “We know it’s going to be down to the wire, but we’ll be ready on Monday.”
He noted that families may not receive their students’ schedule until Friday afternoon but urged everyone to be patient and to keep an eye out for emails from their student’s campus. The following schedule will apply to the remote learning day:
- Elementary: 8:35 a.m. to 3:40 p.m.
- Middle School: 9:40 a.m. to 4:45 p.m.
- High School: 8:30 a.m. to 4:15 p.m.
Even though the school day is virtual, Miranda said attendance is just as important as ever. Teachers will be taking attendance every day and students will need to be logged in and present to count. The official attendance-taking times are:
- Elementary: 9:30 a.m.
- Middle School: 10:30 a.m.
- High School: 9:20 a.m.
“We need all of our students to be engaged everyday because it’s essential for learning,” Miranda said. “Especially this year, with the remote start for all students, we really need to make sure we connect with every child, every day.”
The district is planning on remote learning for all students through at least Sept. 11. When health conditions allow, the goal is to bring students of families who want in-person learning back onto campus in the safest way possible.
“We’re going to keep all of our families and staff updated as decisions are made about when to start our Safety-First In-Person learning,” Miranda said. “We know about 35 percent of our families want their students back in a classroom, and we want to be able to provide that in-person instruction.”