Bryan ISD Superintendent Update On Preparing For 2020-2021 School Year

Imagen producida por el distrito de Bryan.

Parents of Bryan school district students have received e-mails asking if their children will be learning in the classroom, online, or for seventh through 12th grades, a hybrid combination.

Superintendent Christie Whitbeck says employees have been contacted. And she has a task force of teachers from each campus interacting with central office administrators.

Whitbeck says the return of classes on August 17th is about the curriculum and the social and emotional well-being of students interacting with classmates either in person or online.

From a budgetary standpoint, BISD will be monitoring pandemic related expenses to prepare for the new school year.

Next Monday, the BISD school board will receive an update on next year’s proposed budget.

Click below for comments from Christie Whitbeck, visiting with wTAW’s Bill Oliver:

Listen to “Bryan ISD superintendent Christie Whitbeck update on preparing for 2020-21 school year” on Spreaker.

Content of Bryan ISD e-mail sent to parents and guardians of BISD students:

I hope that you and your family have been safe and healthy and have found some time to enjoy family despite the unusual circumstances. The beginning of the new school year is just under 40 days away, and I know our community is eager to learn more about our plans for the fall semester.

In my previous updates, I mentioned that the Texas Education Agency (TEA) would be providing long-awaited guidance to school districts on the requirements and protocols for hosting in-person classes. Unfortunately, due to the rapidly changing circumstances from COVID-19, that promised guidance from the TEA did not arrive until Tuesday, July 7, so our staff has been busy working to incorporate the requirements into our Return to Learn 2020-21 Plan.

After reviewing the first parent survey, our Bryan ISD Team began working to draft multiple scenarios for instruction. Now is the time for you to make the selection that you feel is best for you, your child, and your family.

You can choose from three options:

On-Campus Learning (face-to-face in the classroom)
At-Home Learning (online)
Hybrid model (online and face-to-face for grades 7-12)

Regardless of which learning option you choose for your child, the expectations for coursework and the grading system will be the same for both in-person and at-home learning. We believe this is the fairest and most equitable solution for all of our students. Applicable high school credit courses in 7th-12th grades will be included in calculating GPA and class rank for both in-person and online learning students. Students learning online will engage in daily activities that combine teacher-led instruction along with independent learning. A student’s schedule may reflect short periods of synchronous learning scheduled throughout the day followed by time for independent, asynchronous learning activities.

For our students who choose to attend face-to-face in-person classes, Bryan ISD will follow all applicable guidelines and protocols from the state in place at the time. We will place more signs around campuses promoting safe health practices, increase cleaning and sanitation, and frequently remind students about hand hygiene and social distancing. Face coverings will be recommended or required depending on state guidelines at the time. We will comply with all health safety recommendations established by the health department and the Texas Education Agency, and all staff members will receive COVID-19 prevention training prior to the opening of school.

Beginning the week of July 13, you will receive an email from Bryan ISD to complete the online returning student registration forms. Part of this important process will be asking you to make an initial commitment for your child(ren) to choose either on-campus or at-home learning for the first six weeks for the 2020-21 school year. The email will come from BISD_enrollment@bryanisd.org. In order for Bryan ISD to finalize staffing requirements, we are asking that this commitment be made no later than 8:00 a.m. on Monday, August 3, 2020, which is the final day for you to change your decision. For those who do not complete the online registration verification, your child will be automatically enrolled in on-campus face-to-face instruction. Your child’s schedule and teacher assignments cannot be finalized until we receive your commitment, so please consider completing the form as soon as possible. Students will be expected to remain in their chosen option through at least a six-week grading period in order to limit scheduling and staffing complexities. If you don’t receive the email regarding the online returning student registration, then please call 979-209-1288 or email BISD_enrollment@bryanisd.org.

We understand that circumstances could change for our families throughout the year so adjustments and changes in preference can be made each six weeks by contacting your school.

We have posted more information about the Bryan ISD Return to Learn 2020-21 plan, along with frequently asked questions at www.bryanisd.org/returntolearn.

We will continue to share new information and updates with you as the summer progresses. It is clear that COVID-19 has changed our world in so many ways, and I continue to appreciate your support and understanding as we work through these trying times. Together, we will remain committed to supporting each and every student on their learning journey.

Please continue to stay safe and enjoy the rest of your summer.