FORT WORTH, Texas - Fort Worth ISD students will have two more weeks of virtual learning after trustees voted for an extension early Wednesday morning.
In a 5-4 vote, trustees decided to extend online learning and give students the option to return to the classroom October 19 instead of the original date of October 5.
The board initially considered a four week extension, but that was voted down.
Tuesday night’s meeting lasted nearly 11 hours and included passionate opinions from nearly 200 parents, teachers and the trustees.
Board president Jacinto Ramos, Jr. spoke after the marathon meeting wrapped up about 3:30 a.m.
“This board had a long set of dialogues specifically around the safety of our children and our staff and our educators and community at large that's what took us deep into the night,” Ramos, Jr. said.
Teachers and their supporters protested outside the meeting as it started on Tuesday, asking the board to consider their health and keep students home.
District 9 Trustee Ashley Paz was hoping for a longer delay.
“I'm not happy with two weeks,” she said. “I'm going to approve it because two weeks is better than no weeks.”
Another group of teachers and parents emailed trustees a petition asking them to bring students back to school October 5, which was the original plan.
The district says when students return to school October 19, it will be a gradual, staggered approach across the campuses.