Irving ISD extends remote learning, Richardson ISD staggers student return dates

Irving ISD officials announced virtual learning will be extended through the end of September while Richardson ISD plans to start bringing kids back to campus after Labor Day.

The board of trustees voted Monday night to move forward with the plan to offer in-person learning after Labor Day. But, those that are choosing face-to-face learning for the semester will return on different dates based on their grade level.

Students in Richardson have been learning remotely since Aug. 19. Many RISD students and parents were excited to learn that the district is reopening classrooms. 

“If you look at a screen your eyes get tired,” said third grader Sophie Babisak.

“I feel better when I am in Mrs. Rottenberry's classroom,” said first grader Audrey Mosley.

Pre-k thru 6th grade will be allowed back on September 8. Junior high and high school follow in the coming weeks. 

But with Dallas County's health authority recommending schools remain closed past September 8, other school districts are making different decisions.

Irving ISD decided to keep classes virtual through September 25. The reaction from parents was mixed on the district’s Facebook page.

"Thanks Irving ISD board! Keeping students safe is the best option,” one parent wrote.

“What about the parents that work and are paying daycare hundreds of dollars to keep their child...?,” another wrote.

Richardson ISD parents FOX4 talked to said their concerns about school outweigh their worry about the coronavirus.

“Neither of us can get anything done, we’re working nights, we’re tired,” said mom Kristi Mosley .

And then there is the technology.

“We've had about three times a drop out of Zoom meetings. One time we couldn't even get back in,” said mom Georgie Babisak.

Superintendent Dr. Jeannie Stone said the district made the decision to resume in person classes, to prevent learning losses in students that could impact them for life.

“Top goal is that every student will be reading at grade level by third grade. That developmental time is what sets them up for success for literally the rest of their schooling. If you can’t read by third grade then they’re going to be behind and trying to play catch up for the remainder of their school time,” Stone said.

Stone said they are taking safety very seriously and will require universal masking of both students and teachers.

BACK TO SCHOOL: North Texas school district start dates & delays