Students in classroom

Lewisville ISD is planning to go back to the number of instructional minutes that it used before the COVID-19 pandemic happened.

During a work session Monday, LISD Superintendent Kevin Rogers said the staff is recommending 435 instructional minutes per day, which is what LISD used in the 2019-20 school year.

Last year the district decided to increase the school day by 25 extra minutes so it could bank enough school days and provide flexibility in case the COVID-19 pandemic forced the district to shut down.   

Rogers said as optimism grows that things will start to get back to normal by the next school year it was worth exploring the idea of going back to 435 minutes. He said the principals favored that idea.

“There are a lot of different factors that come into play,” Rogers said, “like transportation and food service.”

He said other factors include the district’s desire not to pick up elementary school students five minutes earlier in the morning, since they already have an early pick-up time. He said adding minutes also extends the middle school schedule, which he said already runs late.

“After all those considerations and talking with our principals it was really obvious … they would prefer to go back to 435,” Rogers said.

The district said 435 minutes provides more than the 75,600 minutes in a school year that districts are required to have. It would also give the district two bad weather days and 1.3 banked days to build into the calendar.

Rogers said the STEM Academy students will still have 25 extra minutes.

“We expect things to return to what they were like two school years ago,” Rogers said.

But he said that all depends on what happens in the next few months with the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Of course the great concern right now in our country and in Texas is what the (virus) variant is doing, particularly in younger (people) 20-29 in that age group … we expect things to return, you know, much like what it was two school years ago,” Rogers said. “(But) I can’t lock that in yet.”

The school day start times will be announced soon, district spokeswoman Amanda Brim said.

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