Garland ISD joined the state-wide effort to convince the Texas legislature to allow districts to continue virtual learning.
As the Texas legislature nears its recess for the next two years, school districts reached out to Lt. Governor Dan Patrick, Chairman Larry Taylor and Members of the Senate Education Committee to extend the option of virtual learning into the 2021-22 school year.
School districts across Texas noted in the letter that they felt virtual education would become a significant part of the future of education for children.
The districts outlined advantages of allowing a virtual component including flexibility for athletes, students engaged in apart-time job and students who are being treated for life-threatening illnesses.
In past school board meetings, it was revealed that a portion of students across all grade blocs were successful in virtual learning environments. Because of this, Garland ISD set in motion the development of a functioning virtual school program if virtual learning is approved by the state for the 2021-22 school year.
One option discussed of the virtual program revolved around the creation of two schools – a kindergarten through eighth-grade program and a high school program. The projected enrollment for the kinder through eighth program is 2,765 students with 107 teacher staffing. Classrooms would consist of around 27 students.
The high school portion is projected to have 1,840 students with 70 teachers. This would host classrooms of 30.
Students who enrolled in the online program would be required to remain virtual for the entirety of the school year.
Funding for the schools would tentatively come from the state and average daily attendance, ADA revenue.
The Texas legislature will end on May 31.