RED OAK ISD Approves 2020-2021 Calendar
(RED OAK, TX) — In an effort to give students more educational time in the classroom, assess academic concerns following the spring Coronavirus shutdown, and prepare for possible closures in 2020-2021, the Red Oak ISD School Board has approved minor changes to the 2020-2021 academic calendar. The district is planning to return to full in-person instruction, with health and safety precautions in place, on the new first day – August 13.
“We know the end of the spring semester was not ideal and while some students thrived in the new virtual learning home environment, many students will need a little extra to stay on track academically,” stated ROISD Superintendent Brenda Sanford. “We will provide somewhat accelerated instruction this fall to combat COVID-19. Our students and teachers deserve the extra time to get back on track.”
Health and safety measures being planned for the fall include hand-sanitizing/wash stations, consideration of a variety of personal protective equipment for students and staff, social distancing measures for large group classes, and guidelines for electives and extra-curricular programs including athletics and fine arts.
Academic and auxiliary staffing needs, student nutrition options, and transportation guidelines are also being reviewed for TEA and state compliance, and to best serve the safety of our students and staff. Of course, the district will follow all state and local guidelines.
Additional minutes and days of instruction will also help meet state requirements should the district or a campus need to close due to a Coronavirus outbreak. The district is preparing for various instructional scenarios including possible shutdowns that would revert to remote/distant learning.
Start of School – Thursday, August 13
The first day of school will bump up four days to Thursday, August 13 (from Wednesday, August 19). Teachers will still report back Monday, August 10. This will shorten staff development time to essential training and teacher preparation. The remainder of the fall schedule is as previously approved, including the three staff development days built into the fall semester.
Student Make-Up/Staff Development Days
January 5, March 29, and April 19 are now a new designation – Student Make-Up/Staff Development Days. These days will be used as make-up instructional days for students and staff if any campus/district closures take place. If not necessary, those three days will revert to Staff Development Days for district/campus training.
These changes were brought to the board for a vote on June 15, 2020, after much discussion by staff and vetting of the Red Oak Community Advisory Council by email. The council is comprised of parents, business leaders, district staff, and community members.
“We are acutely aware of parental concerns regarding student safety and attendance,” said Sanford. “While the state may not allow waivers for missed instructional days, we will be working with families on a case-by-case basis to teach our students while also meeting state attendance guidelines. We also know this slight adjustment to the calendar may impact some families’ travel plans, and for that, we apologize in advance. This decision was not taken lightly and we hope you know we did our best to balance all concerns involved.”
“As the state opens back up, we continue to monitor the numbers daily. We know some family homes include older grandparents, parents with auto-immune issues, and even children with health concerns. Again, we will work through various individual scenarios to educate each and every child.”
“We are exploring various options to provide a continuum of education for students beginning with the return of onsite classroom instruction with contingency plans to revert to remote learning if necessary,” said Sanford. “We are increasing our available devices, researching community WIFI connections, and evaluating every aspect of how we traditionally think of ‘school’ taking place. The district will be prepared to educate students in all situations.”
Returning Red Oak ISD students can complete the online Returning Student Registration starting July 21, 2020. Remember, you must provide proof of residency with a current (past 30 days) utility bill, tax receipt, a lease or rental agreement. New student enrollment for all grades can also be completed online.
School hours have also been slightly modified for the 2020-2021 school year to accommodate transportation routes for the growing ridership and provide a balance of instructional minutes at all grade levels.
Red Oak ISD School Hours
Elementary Schools 7:25 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
RO Middle School 7:55 a.m. to 3:40 p.m.
RO High School 8:20 a.m. to 4:05 p.m.
“We will continue to provide the best for Red Oak ISD students, parents, and staff,” Sanford added. “Thank you in advance for your support.”