Dear Lackland ISD Parents/Guardians,
I certainly hope and pray that both you and your family are safe and having an enjoyable summer. I know there are a lot of questions and uncertainties surrounding the beginning of the school year and many of you are anxious for answers. There are still several decisions to be made and we are awaiting additional guidance from the Texas Education Agency (TEA) and our local health officials.
Please know that we are planning daily and working on the best plan possible for our students and staff. We are in regular communication with the Commissioner of Education, as we receive guidance from the Texas Education Agency, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), JBSA-Lackland, and local health officials.
Let me start with a reassuring statement, that IF the current state of the pandemic in our local area warrants that we teach ALL students using a remote instructional model, we will do so to protect our students and staff. We will also continue to plan for all possible contingencies.
Currently, it is our plan to return to school on August 17, 2020, which is the date on the Lackland ISD 2020-2021 adopted calendar.
Parents will have the option to choose either of the methods of instruction listed below. Remote instruction will be for students whose parents may not feel comfortable sending their children to school.
- face-to-face or
- remote instruction.
Face to Face:
The face-to-face instruction will follow the normal academic day with modifications to promote social distancing. We will require and provide face masks, face shields, sanitizing stations, contactless water fountains, signage, an isolation health clinic, and many other safety precautions. We have developed screening protocols for students and staff from their arrival to departure from school.
The Texas Education Agency has endorsed two types of remote instruction: Asynchronous and Synchronous. TEA’s definitions of these terms is noted below:
- Asynchronous instruction is when the instructor and student are not engaged in instruction at the same time and can consist of prerecorded videos and pre-assigned work.
- Synchronous instruction is described as two-way, real-time/live virtual instruction between the student and the teacher using a computer, phone, or other electronic device. According to TEA, students in grades PK-2 are not eligible to participate in synchronous instruction.
Based on TEA’s guidance and the district’s limited ability to provide full synchronous instruction at this time, the options for students in Lackland ISD will be:
- Grades PK-2 will be either face-to-face instruction or remote asynchronous instruction.
- Grades 3-12 student options will be face-to-face instruction or asynchronous instruction with synchronous opportunities.
Both remote opportunities will be managed using our Learning Management System (LMS) known as Canvas. Students choosing the remote (asynchronous) option will be required to engage daily in order to be counted present for class each school day and must complete the same academic requirements as students who are present on campus each day. In addition, using the Texas Virtual School Network or TXVSN will remain an option for grades 3 through 12, however, there are specific rules associated with TXVSN and parents interested in this option will need to meet with their child’s counselor.
In order to plan how many students will be participating in each method of instruction (face-to-face or remote), we will be asking parents to choose which method they will utilize during registration or via a parent questionnaire. This will allow each campus to plan how to organize courses and classes. More specific information will be provided as we get closer to the beginning of school. A Lackland ISD Task Force composed of parents, teachers, administrators, JBSA-Lackland school liaison officer, JBSA-Lackland Youth Center Director, and other district staff have met three times to discuss both school safety and options for remote instruction for the 2020-2021 school year. A draft plan was presented to the Task Force based on feedback from parent and staff surveys, as well as the Task Force members. The plan will go to the Lackland ISD School Board for final review during their next scheduled meeting.
Please know that we plan to implement recommended safety measures to open schools such as temperature checks, masks, face shields, reduced class sizes, increased cleaning and disinfecting, and overall social distancing in all common areas according to state and CDC guidelines. Because the COVID-19 pandemic continues to evolve, we will continue to work with our local and state health officials to determine the best practices for maintaining the health and safety of our employees and students.
I will be hosting several Virtual Town Hall Meetings in the very near future to go into more detail concerning instructional options and safety considerations. You will be notified via our messaging service when these meetings have been set up.
Please continue to check our website for the most up-to-date information. As we receive guidance and decisions are made, we will inform you and our community.
Burnie L. Roper
Dr. Burnie Roper
Superintendent of Schools