Create an Account - Increase your productivity, customize your experience, and engage in information you care about.
While uncertainty surrounds every aspect of our daily lives due to COVID-19, Little Elm ISD administrators are weighing options as it relates to the 2020-2021 school year. Superintendent Daniel Gallagher and his leadership team are forging plans for the fall school semester. “Even though we don’t know exactly what the future might hold, we have discussed different options best suited to serve the needs of our kids,” Gallagher said.
During Monday’s school board meeting, Dr. Cyndy Mika, superintendent for Curriculum and Learning Services, presented the plan for the 2020-2021 school year addressing in-school learning, online learning, and sporadic short-term closures. It included supporting evidence from the community through a recent ThoughtExchange launched by the District on June 4. The plan mirrors what the community is thinking, including the thoughtful insight from the District’s COVID-19 Task Force. "We spent an hour and a half on just one of the topics," said board member LeAnna Harding who also serves on the District’s COVID-19 committee. "This presentation is a great summary of the amount of detail we covered in these meetings. As a parent of former students who attended, I appreciate the hard work that was put into this plan."
Gallagher recently established a task force consisting of employees from numerous District departments. They have been meeting weekly to outline best practices in a “what if” scenario with the health and safety of students and staff at the core of every decision. “Our goal is to return to a normal schedule in the fall. However, due to the nature of this pandemic and it’s fluidity, it is going to be critical we think out every possible scenario and our response to it,” said Gallagher.
The District is planning for students and teachers to return "100% In-School Learning" by establishing enhanced practices to ensure safe and healthy learning environments. In the event schools are again ordered to close, the District is prepared to launch a revamped version of the spring’s At-Home Learning. This means more teacher-led lessons to students at home through the use of technology.
“I do understand we have families who may want their children to remain at home and receive their education online. We are working on enhancing our online program for those families as a choice option. Our goal is to meet the educational needs of our students whether they are attending classes in our buildings or through our online program” said Gallagher.
District officials continue to partner with governing bodies such as the Texas Education Agency (TEA) and the University Interscholastic League (UIL), as well as public health officials. In many cases, these agencies guide the work of the District and provide a framework for decisions. District officials will communicate with the community as more information and plans become finalized throughout the summer.