Plano ISD delays return to campuses as coronavirus cases rise throughout region

Plano ISD officials announced July 17 all students will begin the 2020-21 school year in remote learning. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Plano ISD officials announced July 17 all students will begin the 2020-21 school year in remote learning. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)

Plano ISD officials announced July 17 all students will begin the 2020-21 school year in remote learning. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)

All Plano ISD students will begin the school year in remote learning after the district pushed back a planned return to classrooms by at least four weeks.

The district had been preparing for two learning tracks in the fall—one fully remote and one fully in-person—but the July 17 announcement represents a delay of the second option.

School district officials pointed to “recent surges in positive COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations” in the area, arguing the choice would help protect the health of staff and students.

“While we want nothing more than to welcome students back into our buildings and once again see smiling faces in our classrooms, the health and safety of both students and staff will always be at the heart of our decision-making,” PISD Superintendent Sara Bonser said in a news release.

The remote learning option available in the fall is expected to be more engaging than what was offered in the spring, when the ongoing coronavirus pandemic prompted schools to close and teachers and families to adjust to a fully online setup.


Among the changes to remote learning, the district said it would add daily “synchronous” learning sessions, where teachers and students would be able to interact during live instruction sessions. Curriculum for remote and in-person options is expected to be the same, district officials said in June.

Still, Bonser said remote learning would not be a long-term substitute for face-to-face instruction.

“I have full confidence that our amazing teachers and administrators will continue to provide students the quality education they deserve and that our community expects despite these unique circumstances,” Bonser said in the release.

Students signed up for in-person learning are currently expected to return to their campuses Sept. 9. Those who are signed up for remote learning would continue on that track as in-person students returned to schools.
By Daniel Houston
Daniel Houston covers city government, transportation, business and education for Community Impact Newspaper in Lewisville, Flower Mound and Highland Village. A Fort Worth native and Baylor University graduate, Daniel reported previously for The Associated Press in Oklahoma City and The Dallas Morning News.


MOST RECENT

Texas Central has signed a $16 billion contract with Webuild to lead the civil construction team that will build the train. (Rendering courtesy Texas Central)
Texas Central signs $16B construction contract for high-speed rail project

Texas Central could be one step closer to starting construction.

council in chambers
Julie Holmer, Kayci Prince sworn in on Plano City Council

Runoff election winners Julie Holmer and Kayci Prince were sworn in at the June 14 Plano City Council meeting.

rendering of development
Collin Creek Mall redevelopment in Plano to generate $150M through tax zone

The city of Plano expects a tax reinvestment zone located at the Collin Creek Mall development to generate more than $150 million over 36 years.

The Electric Reliability Council of Texas issued a call for Texans to conserve energy June 14. (Iain Oldman/Community Impact Newspaper)
ERCOT asks Texans to conserve energy with generation outages 2.5 times higher than normal

"This is unusual for this early in the summer season," said Woody Rickerson, ERCOT vice president of grid planning and operations, in a news release.

Dutch Bros Coffee expects to open later this year in Richardson. (Courtesy Dutch Bros Coffee)
Dutch Bros Coffee coming to Richardson; Plano parks earn high marks and more DFW-area news

Read the latest business and community news from the Dallas-Fort Worth area.

Renovations recently began at Russell Creek Park, which opened in 1995 and is one of Plano's many parks. (Courtesy city of Plano)
Plano earns highest ranking for parks in Texas

The Trust for Public Land’s annual ParkScore index evaluates parks systems in the nation's most populous cities.

Dutch Bros Coffee expects to open this summer in Plano. (Courtesy Dutch Bros Coffee)
Dutch Bros Coffee coming to Plano; The Pop Parlour opens in Frisco and more DFW-area news

Read the latest business and community news from the Dallas-Fort Worth area.

The company sells American bohemian clothing, accessories, shoes and swimwear. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Free People opens new store at Legacy West in Plano

The company sells American bohemian clothing, accessories, shoes and swimwear.

Tory Burch sells ready-to-wear clothing, shoes, handbags, accessories and more. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Tory Burch opens location at Legacy West in Plano

The store sells ready-to-wear clothing, shoes, handbags, accessories and more.

Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott was one of the store's first customers when it opened in April, according to the owner. (Courtesy Prized Kicks)
Prized Kicks now selling sneakers and streetwear in Plano

The store, located in the Shops at Legacy development, buys, sells and trades new and lightly used premium sneakers and streetwear.

Drink cup.
Dutch Bros Coffee to open location in Plano

The Oregon-based drive-thru coffee company serves specialty coffee, smoothies, freezes, teas, a private-label Dutch Bros Blue Rebel energy drink and nitrogen-infused cold brew coffee.