LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - Officials with Lubbock Independent School District have alerted parents the district has decided to eliminate virtual instruction for all pre-k through 8th grade students beginning August 1, 2021.
The full email to parents is below
Good evening, Lubbock ISD families,
It’s hard to believe it was almost a year ago traditional instruction in education was turned upside down by the pandemic. We have faced unending challenges and gained invaluable insight in providing a quality educational experience during these unusual times. We are confident the expanded offerings and effectiveness of vaccines will soon give us the ability to regain a sense of normalcy. Although teachers and students have done an amazing job this school year with both in-person and virtual options, we know in-person instruction provides the most benefits for our children. After careful evaluation and consideration, Lubbock ISD will eliminate the virtual instruction mode for all pre-kindergarten through eighth-grade students beginning with the August 2021 semester.
- Virtual students this year have had a 17% increase in absence rate and a 20% increase in failure rate compared to face-to-face students.
- Due to unfinished learning during the 2020-21 school year, Lubbock ISD is creating interventions and support systems for many students to fill in learning opportunities in June 2021. Retention may be necessary for those who have fallen too far behind.
- In addition to teaching and learning, Lubbock ISD provides extensive counseling services and food support. Although the district has continued providing these services to virtual students, it is difficult and costly to replicate these systems in a virtual setting. With more than 76% of students experiencing lower socioeconomic conditions, it is necessary to provide consistent support services for all students.
- Many research-based practices, techniques, programs, and services are proven to be most effective when provided in person.
- In order to evaluate, build rapport, and intervene effectively on behalf of students with significant social and emotional needs that happen outside of the school setting, school staff need to see the students face-to-face and interact with them every day.
- Student engagement is best addressed through in-person instruction when certain students do not have adequate access to adult support at home and/or a safe and stable learning environment.
If allowed, we’re planning to provide some form of virtual learning for high school students requesting this accommodation through our Matthews Academy and will provide more information at a later date.
It has been a source of pride and accomplishment that Lubbock ISD started school on time with both in-person and virtual instruction this school year. We are thankful we can return to the mode of learning, proven now more than ever, to be the most effective for children - in-person instruction in a classroom setting. And as always, we appreciate your support of Lubbock ISD and our mission to nurture, develop, and inspire every child, every day. Hope you have a fun and extraordinary spring break.
Dr. Kathy Rollo
Superintendent, Lubbock ISD