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Rockwall ISD announces parents will have the choice of in-person classes, remote learning for upcoming school year

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Rockwall ISD today announced that parents will have the choice to enroll their children in either in-person classes or remote instruction for the 2020-2021 school year.

The 2020-2021 school calendar, approved by the Board of Trustees on January 21, 2020, remains unchanged. A school start date of August 17 is expected, as well as the school holidays outlined by the approved calendar.

The only undetermined school holiday is the school’s Fair day. The State Fair of Texas organization has not made their decision as to whether the State Fair will be held yet. That decision will determine whether Rockwall ISD will observe the State Fair of Texas Day on Wednesday, October 7. That decision will be made by the end of July.

Parents will have the choice of either In-Person Class or Remote Instruction

Once the Texas Education Agency releases specific guidance regarding In-Person Class, RISD will communicate the details of In-Person Class and Remote Instruction to parents to decide the instructional model for their child(ren).

In-Person Class: Parent Choice of Learning Option

Rockwall ISD plans to offer In-Person classes, five days a week at all RISD campuses for PK-12+, this includes post-secondary Project LIFE Young Adults, pending Texas Education Agency guidelines. While in-person classes will require additional health and safety precautions, the Texas Education Agency has yet to issue requirements and guidance to schools. RISD will comply with state requirements in the effort to limit the spread of the virus among students, staff, other employees, and our community. The following are a few of the safety measures under consideration: 

  • Reduce student movement/transition in the building
  • Transitioning students from class to class
  • Lunch in the classroom/designated location
  • Face masks encouraged for both students and staff 
  • Daily thorough cleaning of facilities
  • None or limited large gatherings
  • Limited outside visitors
  • Students enrolled in this learning model will be expected to participate in district/state assessments to document student learning and growth. 

In-Person Class Intermittent Closures

Rockwall ISD is also developing contingency plans for Intermittent Closures, if necessary. Intermittent Closures (the closing of a classroom, grade level, or campus) will occur for students and staff at a specific school if a recommendation for temporary physical closure is determined by public health authorities. In such a case, teaching and learning would move to a remote, at-home model for the duration of the temporary closure before reopening for in-person classes. For students attending In-Person Class, remote instruction will be the model during all potential Intermittent Closures.

Remote Instruction: Parent Choice of Learning Option

Remote instruction will be a parent choice learning option. The School Start Committee is currently developing the Remote Instruction plan. Students enrolled in this learning model will be expected to participate in district/state assessments to document student learning and growth. 

Special Education Instructional Services

The Rockwall ISD Special Programs Department is working under the guidance of the Texas Education Agency to develop a plan for students enrolled in the program. Students who receive mainstream instruction, in-class support, or co-teach instruction will continue to participate in the general education curriculum with their individualized accommodations/modifications being implemented by the special education teacher. Students who receive resource instruction will have access to a modified general education curriculum at their instructional level. Students who are on an alternate curriculum will receive instruction of prerequisite skills at their instructional level. More information will be released to parents as plans are finalized.

Technology Plans

The District is planning for the safest possible implementation of In-Person classes and Remote Instruction for the Fall. In that effort, students and staff must have the ability to transition smoothly between In-Person classes and Remote Instruction in the event of COVID-19 outbreaks. Intermittent Closures (the closing of a classroom, grade level, or campus) will be the procedure followed when COVID-19 outbreaks occur. In the event of an Intermittent Closure, the need for technology is critical for learning to continue. The District is making plans for such a transition now with a proposal for the purchase of additional Chromebooks for students in need of a device.

UIL Programs & Events

Rockwall ISD, like all other school districts, awaits requirements and guidance from the UIL and Texas Education Agency regarding Fall student participation in UIL activities such as Fine Arts and athletics.

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