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Bryan ISD surveying the interest of the community for a new online school

Posted at 6:31 PM, Apr 22, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-22 19:31:23-04

BRYAN, TX — Some students found it difficult transitioning to virtual learning during the pandemic, but others found it a blessing in disguise. Now Bryan ISD is looking to provide an online school option for those interested.

Through this online survey, Bryan ISD is looking to gain feedback from all community members living in the Bryan area. Whether you have a student enrolled or plan to in the future, they want to hear from you.

”For some, online learning was the right fit. For others, on-campus learning was the right fit. Ultimately, it’s our hope that we design a school system that fits their needs," said Barbara Ybarra, Bryan ISD Associate Superintendent of Teaching and learning. "Fits their wants, and fits the way they learn best,”

This online academy will allow teachers and staff to dedicate one on one attention to those students' online learning rather than splitting time between the two groups.

Teachers have worked extremely hard this past school year to adapt to this hybrid version of teaching, but many have expressed it hasn't been easy.

“It’s different than how it was done this year this would be a totally and separate campus so that it would have its own school name its own teaching staff its own principal even,” Ybarra added.

One thing the pandemic has taught school districts is that students enjoy learning in different ways. Students from grades five through twelve would get the opportunity to continue exploring their academics virtually.

“We have a help desk that is open to anyone in Bryan ISD and we have members staffing those phones at any time to help answer questions or to direct individuals questions to the right person,” said Jana Wenzel, Bryan ISD Assistant Director of Instructional Technology and Resources.

Two separate bills in the House and the Senate will determine what lengths school districts can take this virtual schooling. This may determine whether students can actively engage in extracurricular activities while enrolled online.

“Perhaps they can come on campus for choir or a performing art," Ybarra shared. "And the rest of their school is virtual that’s all pending in the legislative actions in the coming weeks but that might be a possibility too,”

The pandemic has provided an unintentional trial run for families utilizing virtual learning and some students have stuck through it for the entire school year.

“A little immersion before the experience so their feedback and interest allow them to have a little background on what that environment could possibly look like moving forward,” Wenzel shared.

The survey was released this week and will remain open for two weeks. So far, the school district has received at least 700 hundred responses.

If the survey gains enough attraction the academy would begin this upcoming school year.