Planning for an expanded, permanent virtual learning program will continue at Leander ISD.

On Feb. 22, the LISD school board unanimously approved the district to move forward in planning and implementation of the LISD Virtual Learning Academy, which was first presented Jan. 28.

The program would create a four-year virtual school that could begin in the 2021-22 school year with up to 300 ninth- and tenth-grade students. The program would expand each year with its first senior class in the 2023-24 school year. If approved, a lottery system would select students in April.

The virtual high school would expand the existing virtual New Hope High School offerings in combination with the temporary virtual learning program used during the ongoing pandemic. Virtual academy students would not have access to extracurricular activities, but services such as counseling would be expanded from New Hope.

The district will only move forward with the program based on student interest, Chief Academic Officer Matt Bentz said. The district has scheduled a family information night for 6:30 p.m. March 4. A student interest survey will also be sent out before the end of the week, Bentz said.

“If the student interest isn’t there, I’ll come back to you and tell you that, and we’ll probably not do it,” Bentz said.