(CBSDFW.COM) – Schools in Texas will be allowed to begin the 2020-2021 school year virtually for at least the first four weeks, the Texas Education Agency (TEA) announced Friday.
The TEA released additional guidance for reopening school buildings during the upcoming year, including the change for the start of the new year.
According to the TEA, school districts will be able to start the year through online-only means for their first four weeks. After that, in-person instruction can begin.
If districts want to continue remote learning past the four weeks, they will need to receive a waiver request from the TEA.
The TEA said school districts are still able to delay the start of their new year if their areas continue to see a surge in COVID-19 cases.
The new guidance announced Friday also allows high schools use a full-time hybrid model of at-home and in-person learning once students are allowed on campus.
“This model will provide for a more socially distanced school experience, where students receive a portion of their instruction on-campus and a portion of their instruction remotely at home,” the TEA said in a statement.
Schools districts must also provide parents with a plan of action one week before students begin in-person learning.
On Thursday, the Dallas County Health and Human Services issued an order that requires the county’s school districts to begin the new year virtually.
Districts like DeSoto, Duncanville, Lancaster and Cedar Hill said they plan to delay the start of school until Tuesday, Sept. 8.