Mansfield ISD has plans to create a virtual academy that could have hundreds of students enrolled.
- Virtual learning continues to be a big part of the education landscape for students all over the nation. But as districts see in-person learning on the rise, getting back to what we knew as normal, a number of north Texas school districts actually plan to take virtual learning to another level. Our Steve Pickett with more on the plans for virtual academies.
STEVE PICKETT: At-home learning, virtual school, or classroom in the kitchen, whatever the name, the year of school kids staying at home is expected to extend to next year and beyond, possibly. The Mansfield School District is ready to create a campus complete with teachers and staff. But the students will stay home, a stand-alone virtual learning academy for the fall.
KIMBERLY CANTU: This isn't a COVID-related school of choice for us. This is a school of choice for students who thrive in a virtual environment.
STEVE PICKETT: Superintendent Kimberly Cantu says Mansfield ISD could see several students enrolled in the virtual academy. Denton ISD already has 300 children signed up for their proposed K through 8 Virtual Academy.
CALEB LEATH: We're going to have students that have been excelling in it. And they're going to be to continue. But at the same time, we also have families that they're not quite sure they're ready to send their students back to school next year due to the pandemic.
STEVE PICKETT: With approval from the TEA, Garland and Dallas School Districts plan to join Denton and Mansfield with virtual academies, as well. The teachers will be located at a designated school. But the students get the school work online, on laptops, in real time virtual settings.
These virtual school proposals impact a small percentage of students. For example, in Mansfield, about 800 of their 35,000 students. The districts will have to fund these schools that have teachers inside but no students. In Dallas, Steve Pickett, CBS 11 News.