Remote learning

Frisco ISD high school students will be able to attend school fully online or in a hybrid fashion as soon as next school year, the district announced Monday.

FISD has announced the introduction of FISD+, an online schooling option for high school students. The announcement comes after the passage of Texas Senate Bill 15, which allows school districts to receive funding for students who attend local remote learning programs through Sept. 1, 2023.

“This is something we have been working on for years, and we are thankful that Senate Bill 15 has propelled us forward in this journey,” Superintendent Mike Waldrip said in a Monday press release.

The district has said students who participate in the program will learn at home from an FISD educator and curriculum “in an online setting that meets and exceeds the Texas Education Agency standards.” The district has stated that teachers will not instruct both on-campus and online students at the same time.

Through the hybrid program, students will take the four “core” classes, including English, math, science and social studies, online and will go to campus for other classes. Hybrid students will be able to participate in UIL activities, fine arts, athletics and other programs.

Students participating in the full-time online program will have to go to campus from time to time for science labs and to pick up course materials, the district stated, but students will take all classes online through this option. FISD’s Monday statement boasted a “rigorous” curriculum that would allow students to graduate with a “Distinguished” diploma “with the choice of several endorsements.”

Fully online students won’t be able to participate in UIL-based activities and competitions, the district stated.

“Teaching and learning will look different depending on the class but students can generally expect to work independently and collaboratively, while also frequently engaging with a teacher in live instruction,” Innovative Learning Director Tiffany Carey said in a press release.

Eligibility for a one-year commitment to the program includes enrolled students who live in Frisco ISD and provide proof of residency. Eligibility guidelines include that students must have passed the 2021 on-level State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness (STAAR) or End of Course exams or a district equivalent; must have passed all classes for the 2021-22 school year and must have less than 10 unexcused absences for the 2021-22 school year.

“The district reserves the right to change a student’s learning environment to in-person learning at any time, including if a student is not making academic progress due to absences or lack of engagement,” the program webpage states.

The application form for the program will open on Dec. 1. FISD has said it must cap enrollment at 10% for each campus and grade level in accordance with state law.

“Students that meet admissions criteria are chosen through a lottery, and once approved, will be sent a commitment form in late summer 2022. Students must fill out the commitment form prior to the closing date of the FISD+ admission window,” the district website states. “An appeals process will be sent along with any students who receive a denial of admission.”

Frisco ISD has scheduled information webinars for 7 p.m. Nov. 10 and noon on Nov. 16, according to the program webpage.

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