Eligible students may soon be able to learn completely virtually at a statewide public charter school system.

Schools under the Harmony Public Schools umbrella may offer up to 10% of its student body a full virtual learning option as a result of the signing of Senate Bill 15 on Sept. 9 by Gov. Greg Abbott, which provides funding for Texas public schools wishing to offer online learning during the 2021-22 school year, the public charter school system announced Sept. 16.

To be eligible to not only participate but remain in virtual learning, students must meet all of the following criteria:

  • The student must have passed the most recent State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness, if applicable to grade level. If a student did not take STAAR, a Northwest Evaluation Association grade-level proficiency is required.

  • The student Must have earned a “C” grade or higher in “foundation curriculum” courses taken virtually or remotely in the previous school year, such as math, or reading.

  • The student must have no more than 10 unexcused absences during the previous school year and maintain less than 10 unexcused absences in a six-month period.

Meanwhile, Harmony Public Schools will continue to offer remote conferencing on an as-needed basis for students who remain on campus but may need to learn from home on a short-term basis. Under this program, students can learn from home for up to 20 instructional days if they have a pre-existing medical condition, or are forced to quarantine due to positive COVID-19 diagnosis or exposure.