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Longview ISD seeking feedback from parents and staff on start of next school year

Longview ISD is seeking feedback on possible start dates.

LONGVIEW, Texas — As many school districts around East Texas release information on the start of the next school year, Longview Independent School District, is giving parents and staff a chance to voice their thoughts on when the next academic year should begin. 

According to the district, there are three options parents and staff can choose from and send their choice via a survey on its website

Students can start the school year on Aug. 17th, keeping the current calendar as approved by the board. 

The second option is a hybrid model with a start date of Aug. 10 and a longer mid-term break, according to the district.

A third option would start the school year earlier than expected on Aug. 3, a recommendation by the Texas Education Agency (TEA).

Many parents and staff reacted to the options on the district's Facebook page. Some asking to clarify the hybrid model (calendar). 

"The thought behind this was if we had to move our start date up, we were trying to get as much classroom time as possible in case we had to close again," Elizabeth Ross, community relations specialist at Longview ISD, said. 

Ross says the hybrid model, option two, would be a combination of the the traditional calendar and the TEA suggested calendar. 

Many parents also asked if all schools would follow the calendar selected by the district or will each charter school select their own schedule.

"The Charter partners go with the calendar that is approved by the Longview ISD school board," Ross said. 

As the coronavirus pandemic caused many school district to enforce distance learning this past school year, the district says they are still working on developing a plan that will work with the district in the new year, in the event COVID-19 causes schools across the state to shutdown. 

Ross says this plan, a reopening and recovery plan, is still in the works. 

"Know that we are taking our staff and our student's safety as a top priority in keeping all of them healthy and keeping all of them well," she said. 

The district's survey closes on June 23. According to the district, any changes to the 2020-2021 school year will be presented to the Board of Trustees for additional discussion and review in a public meeting before they are adopted. 

Details of the survey will be discussed at a special board meeting at noon on June 24. 

The meeting will be streamed on the district's YouTube channel.