Conroe ISD puts virtual school on hold after state bill fails

Plans for a virtual school are on hold in Conroe ISD. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Plans for a virtual school are on hold in Conroe ISD. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)

Plans for a virtual school are on hold in Conroe ISD. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)

Conroe ISD began making plans for a possible virtual school this spring, including hiring a principal, but those plans are on hold after a piece of legislation did not pass at the state level.

Texas House Bill 1468, which would have funded the program, did not pass in the 87th Texas Legislature, which ended May 31.

"Prior to the end of the legislative session, CISD was actively making plans for a virtual school for the 2021-2022 school year," CISD Director of Communications Sarah Blakeloch wrote in an email. "The Legislature did not pass a law approving funding for this instructional option, and plans for a virtual school in CISD have been put on hold. Updates will be shared as information becomes available."

During the 2020-21 school year, the Texas Education Agency counted virtual attendance, known as remote synchronous attendance, as if students were attending school in person. As a school district's funding is tied to attendance, this allowed school districts to receive funding from the state for students who were attending virtually. HB 1468 would have continued this practice of allowing virtual attendance to be counted for funding, but it did not pass. Without this bill's passage, the district will not be receiving that funding for virtual students in the 2021-22 school year.

CISD Superintendent Curtis Null said in an April 23 livestream that virtual schooling was dependent on if the state would allow it. The plan had been to have virtual school for grades 3-9 and then expand it to grades 10-12.

Brooke Sjoberg contributed to this report.
By Vanessa Holt
A resident of the Houston area since 2011, Vanessa began working in community journalism in her home state of New Jersey in 1996. She joined Community Impact Newspaper in 2016 as a reporter for the Spring/Klein edition and became editor of that paper in March 2017 and editor of The Woodlands edition in January 2019.


The Woodlands Township board of directors met June 23. (Vanessa Holt/Community Impact Newspaper)
The Woodlands to argue for $30M of American Rescue Plan Act funding

The Woodlands officials said the township is seeking $30 million in federal American Rescue Plan Act funds.

Work on Flintridge Drive will last about a week. (Courtesy Fotolia)
Flintridge Drive work near George Mitchell Nature Preserve to last about a week

Flintridge Drive will be closed during the project between Falconwing Drive and Rush Haven Drive.

The Kinder Institute for Urban Research released its 2021 State of Housing for Harris County and Houston report on June 22. (Hunter Marrow/Community Impact Newspaper)
Kinder Institute 2021 State of Housing report highlights rental squeeze for lower, middle-income households

As of 2019, one in every 11 renters in Harris County had an eviction notice posted to their door; one in every 25 renter households were also evicted.

The craft beer industry is growing in the Greater Houston area. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Greater Houston area's craft brewery count grows 344% since 2013

According to NAI Partners, the Greater Houston area has 71 craft breweries.

Road work continued on FM 2978 in June. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Work on FM 2978 advances toward slated 2021 completion

The last phase of the FM 2978 project underway was 77% completed in early June, TxDOT said.

Gov. Greg Abbott announced a special legislative session will begin July 8. (Trent Thompson/Community Impact Newspaper)
Gov. Greg Abbott announces special legislative session to start July 8

Agenda items will be announced before the session begins, according to a release from the governor's office.

House of Duchess Beauty Supply Store offers a variety of hair and skin products. (Chandler France/Community Impact Newspaper)
House of Duchess Beauty Supply Store now open on FM 1488 in Magnolia

The beaty store offers a variety of hair and skin products.

When built out, the community will include several housing complexes and community centers. (Community Impact Newspaper)
Miracle City, community for the homeless, eyes 5-year build-out

Five acres on Foster Drive have been cleared for Miracle City, a community serving people experiencing homelessness in Montgomery County.

Tomball ISD is in negotiations to purchase the former headquarters of BJ Services, an oilfield service company that filed for bankruptcy in July 2020, on FM 2920, Chief Financial Officer Jim Ross said in an interview June 16. (Anna Lotz/Community Impact Newspaper)
Tomball ISD considering bond referendum, purchase of former BJ Services campus

“The opportunity for Tomball ISD to potentially purchase the former headquarters of BJ Services would be a game-changer for our growing district," Superintendent Martha Salazar-Zamora said in a June 21 statement.

Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion
Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion announces 3 new concerts for 2021 season

Tickets for all three shows will go on sale to the public June 25.

(Courtesy PetSuites)
PetSuites facility coming soon to Rayford Road

PetSuites is expected to open in August 2021.