School Districts Pushing Back Start Date For 2020

Steven Pickering
July 10, 2020 - 5:32 pm

    DALLAS (KRLD) - Two North Texas school districts have decided to delay the start of classes for the 2020-2021 school year. The Denton ISD has moved its first day of class from Wednesday, August 12th to Wednesday, August 26th. The Little Elm ISD has moved its first day of class from Wednesday, August 12th to Tuesday, August 25th.

    Teachers in both districts will still return in early August.

    "In a year where we are faced with a pandemic that none of us has ever dealt with before, we felt like we needed more training opportunities with our teachers," said Little Elm ISD Assistant Superintendent Dr. Cynthia Anne Mika. "Our teachers need time to develop the lessons for the first few weeks of school."

    Little Elm is moving its professional learning days for staffers to August 3rd. They will run from that date through August 24th instead of being scattered throughout the year. They will use that time to adjust to some of challenges they will face in teaching classes both in-person and on-line.

    "We want all of our staff to be successful and 100% ready when our students return," said Little Elm ISD Superintendent Daniel Gallagher.

    The Denton ISD is consolidating its teacher workdays at the front of the 2020-2021 calendar. Teachers will begin work on August 4th in advance of the first day of instruction for students on Wednesday, August 26th.

    "By pushing the official start date to August 26th, we will have our staff on-hand to practice all safety protocols and build even greater expectations for student learning," said Denton ISD Superintendent Dr. Jamie Wilson. "Our staff is very adept at face-to-face instruction, which is what we want more than anything, having a few extra days is essential as we ensure safety protocols are in place for the comfort level of our families and staff."

    The Denton ISD is keeping the last day of instruction for students as Thursday, May 27 of 2021.

    The decisions come as the UIL announced that students who choose to use on-line, at-home learning options this fall will still be able to participate in extra-curricular activities. Those would include football, volleyball, and other fall sports - assuming those seasons go ahead as planned.