DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – If you are looking for an activity to keep kids entertained this weekend, there is a fun and educational event happening that the whole family can participate in from the comfort of home. Dallas ISD is hosting a ‘Virtual STEM EXPO’ this weekend. The district’s STEM EXPO started seven years ago, as a way to expose students to careers in STEM fields including science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. view article arw

EL PASO, Texas (KFOX14/CBS4) — The Ysleta Independent School District announced Wednesday that in-person classroom instruction will return to campuses beginning Feb. 1 for families that opted into hybrid or face-to-face learning .  YISD employees returned to campuses this week to prepare for in-classroom instruction to return with health and safety protocols in place. The district has also purchased $5 million in new classroom technology to help teachers navigate a return to the classroom by some students while some remain online-only, according to YISD. view article arw

The Leander Independent School District says it’s “having issues” with its data center Tuesday morning, causing service disruptions across the entire district. In a message to families at 8 a.m., Leander ISD said its technology team is “actively working to fix issues” that includes a WiFi outage. In an update at 8:30 a.m., LISD confirmed the outage was just for wireless in the district and that hardwired devices should work properly. view article arw

Following the announcement of a new Texas Education Agency waiver that allows certain districts to schedule periodic asynchronous school days, McKinney ISD’s school board voted to opt in at a Jan. 19 meeting. view article arw

Texas school districts are “relatively close” to having the tools they need to start giving state standardized tests online to nearly all students by 2022-23, according to a study published by the Texas Education Agency. The analysis, conducted by TEA and Texas A&M University officials, found recent technological developments — including the purchase of 2.5 million computer devices amid the COVID-19 pandemic — have better positioned Texas to join the 70 percent of states that already administer their standardized tests virtually. Under a law passed in 2019 by state legislators, TEA officials must create plans for moving their exams online by 2022-23. view article arw

COPPERAS COVE, Texas – A community partnership and matching grant from the Texas Education Agency are assisting Copperas Cove ISD with it goal of every student having a computer device.  The City of Copperas Cove allocated $118,112.50 of its Coronavirus Relief Funds to facilitate distance learning in CCISD. CCISD applied for a matching grant from the Texas Education Agency resulting in $236,225 used to purchase 865 laptops for district use. view article arw

GRAY, Tenn., Jan. 19, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- According to a recent study (NCBI), close to 90 percent of the world's student population has had their learning experience disrupted by new policies put into place as a result of the recent pandemic. Many parents fear that virtual learning will become a permanent fixture due to the instability of in-person instruction, and they don't feel prepared. One of the greatest concerns among these parents is the fear that their children will not cooperate when the parents try to enforce a schoolwork schedule ordered by the district—and it is not necessarily their fault. In an era where the youth often determine the culture, more so than at any time in the world's history, many parents struggle to find the needed respect to lead, guide, and instruct their children. view article arw

Students in two Central Texas school districts will continue in remote learning through next week, following the MLK holiday. Del Valle ISD announced Thursday that it will remain in 100% remote learning through Friday, January 22. The district switched to 100% remote learning on Wednesday of this week. view article arw

Last week’s attack on the Capitol has understandably dominated the news. But I want to take a few minutes this morning to focus on the other vital story right now — the pandemic.  Below is a three-point summary of where we are now, with help from my colleagues covering the story and from a couple of charts. I’ll warn you up front: The situation is not good. view article arw

In an email to parents – in addition to videos posted on social media – Northside Independent School District is asking families to consider keeping their children home for 10 school days. "We have all learned so much during the pandemic," Dr. Brian Woods, NISD Superintendent, said. "One of the things I’ve come to appreciate is that opening schools is certainly easier than keeping them open." view article arw

The superintendent of Northside Independent School District is urging parents to consider virtual learning for their kids through the end of the month because of the surge in COVID-19 cases in San Antonio. Superintendent Brian Woods sent a letter to parents and also posted a video message on social media explaining his request. view article arw

Students and families will be able to pull into parking lots at designated apartment complexes and log in from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. each school day.  Duncanville ISD has launched a new initiative to bring internet access to students who may not have reliable or any service at all. "WiFi on Wheels" is a program where school buses equipped with internet transmitters will park in four locations throughout the district.  view article arw

There will be five webinars over next few weeks providing valuable information to these students, families and educators. The Big Spring Independent School District will be holding webinars for students with disabilities over the next few weeks to help them get on the right track towards employment.  view article arw

Duncanville ISD is putting four school buses on the road that are specifically equipped for high speed internet. According to Duncanville ISD, the new program called 'WiFi on Wheels' kicks off this week, and it is taking internet access to students who may have unreliable or no service at all. School buses equipped with internet transmitters are parked in four locations throughout the district in an effort to offer free wifi to as many students as possible, Duncanville ISD said. view article arw

As COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations in the Austin area continue to surge, Austin ISD is encouraging parents to have their children learn remotely for the remainder of the week. According to a letter sent to Brentwood Elementary School parents by Principal Substitute Kim Placker, Brentwood is encouraging all families to consider taking advantage of remote off-campus instruction for the remainder of this week and possibly next week. AISD is encouraging the same for this week but off-campus instruction isn't mandatory. view article arw

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Two Texas lawmakers are proposing legislation aimed at closing the “digital divide” in the state, as the coronavirus pandemic has highlighted the essential need for internet access.  State Sen. Robert Nichols, R-Jacksonville, and State Rep. Trent Ashby, R-Lufkin, announced Friday that they’ve worked together and each will introduce bills aimed at making sure Texans both have access to internet service and the ability to subscribe to it. The legislative session begins next week, and according to their release, Gov. Greg Abbott has said he wants broadband development to be a priority on his agenda. view article arw

A redesigned website for the Friendswood school district aims to make it easier and simpler for visitors, including parents and students, to access information and the district’s social media pages.  The new design also boosts the district’s ability to make quick updates and changes to the site as needed, said Dayna Owens, the district’s communications director, who spearheaded the redesign with colleague Kelsey Purcell.  Owens said key additions include a cleaner design and direct links to each campus (found through in a pull-down menu from “schools” in the top gray bar) and links to all the district’s social media pages. view article arw

Del Valle ISD says that it will be moving to 100% remote learning this week starting on Wednesday due to the current status of the COVID-19 pandemic in the Austin area. The district will be implementing 100% remote instruction from Wednesday, Jan. 13 through Friday, Jan. 15. DVISD says that Tuesday, Jan. 12 is a regular on-site workday for all staff, but students with the technology at home have the option to remain remote on Tuesday. view article arw

College Station ISD students are a few days into their second semester of the 2020-2021 school year. Superintendent Mike Martindale says they learned a lot in 2020, but they’re ready to take on the second half of the year. Martindale was on News 3 Now Thursday afternoon. As we enter the second semester for students and staff, Martindale says 86.5 percent of the student population is learning on-site. That is about a 20 percent jump from the 68 percent who enrolled in in-person learning last fall. view article arw

Remote learning students in Canutillo Independent School District now have a new way to experience classroom instruction in much the same way that on-campus students do. The District has invested in nearly 300 Swivl integrated robotic cameras that will improve remote instruction by keeping students engaged and connected. Swivl integrates with the Zoom video conferencing solution and allows teachers to have real-time smart cameras that would follow the learning environment for synchronous lesson delivery while simultaneously creating a recording for asynchronous learners. view article arw

District officials share that they have invested in nearly 300 Swivl integrated robotic cameras that will improve remote instruction by keeping students engaged and connected. CISD Technology Executive Director Dr. Oscar Rico says that the level of integration of the Swivl system on a large, district-wide scale is unique to the region and Canutillo ISD is the first to do so. “We are really able to bring the classroom to the students learning at home,” Rico said. “The smart camera system makes the classroom more interactive and they very much get a sense of being in the classroom itself.” view article arw

Argyle ISD, which returns to school Tuesday, will have several days this semester where all students will be learning virtually. view article arw

Texas is once again shaking up its standardized testing contracts, signing four-year agreements totaling $388 million with two companies to develop and administer its controversial State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness exams for public school students.  Cambium Assessment, a Washington D.C.-based testing company, will receive $262 million from 2021 through 2024 to manage the administration, scoring and reporting of all student assessments on one online platform. view article arw

Additional outbreaks of COVID-19 are forcing more Coastal Bend schools to return to virtual learning after the winter break. All schools at the Banquete ISD will be switching to remote learning starting January 6 through Monday, January 18. District leaders said students who reported to school on Jan.4, 5, received positive results this week. view article arw

Students in the Canutillo Independent School District students will soon have robotic smart cameras to help them with remote learning. The district invested in nearly 300 Swivl Integrated robotic cameras, which integrates with the Zoom video conferencing system, allowing teachers to deliver lesson plans through real-time smart cameras. The cameras also allow teachers to move freely through their classroom, while students at home are able to see and hear the teacher and the rest of the class. view article arw

As the Montgomery Independent School District enters the New Year, it is seeking input from the community to help develop a new strategic plan.  “That will be our road map of how do we get from where we are to that goal of being the premier school district in the state of Texas, so that is the journey that we are starting right now,” Montgomery ISD Superintendent Heath Morrison said.  In October, Montgomery ISD’s school board adopted five new district goals to serve as the North Star on a new trajectory. view article arw

Judson Independent School District is inviting its 8th graders and their parents to join in on Parent Zoom Nights. The district states the meetings will cover important information for incoming 9th graders like next year's schedule, advanced academics and dual credit opportunities. view article arw

Several Southeast Texas school districts had to make hard decisions this weekend as students and teachers came back from Christmas break. Not every parent is back to dropping their kids off at school, but some are finally getting to say goodbye to online learning. Across Southeast Texas, school returning from holiday break looks different, with some districts continuing online learning and others transitioning back to in-person classes. view article arw

Freer ISD will be transitioning to remote learning from January 5 through January 8 after 7 students and 7 staff members have tested positive for COVID-19. The district says campuses will be working out plans to distribute devices for students whose devices are at school. view article arw

Jasper ISD will switch over to virtual learning for 'at least January 4th-8th' after the district 'received word that active cases in our county jumped to over 230.' According to the post, numerous staff members have either received positive COVID-19 test results, or are quarantined. The district thanked parents for patience 'as we strive to keep all students and staff safe while focusing on providing the best education' for students. view article arw

Hardin-Jefferson ISD is set to discontinue remote learning starting in January according to a Facebook post from the district. The announcement comes just a few days after East Chambers ISD said it would also move to classroom-only instruction. view article arw

Brazos ISD ending remote instruction

December 1808:20 AM

When Brazos ISD students resume school following winter break, they will no longer have the option to enroll in remote instruction. Superintendent Brian Thompson announced last Tuesday the district will discontinue its virtual program. In a letter to district families, Thompson said beginning Jan. 6, families can either “return to school for face-to-face instruction, enroll in a private school, withdraw to a homeschool program or transfer to another school district that offers remote instruction.” Thompson said pandemic protocols will remain in place but explained the adjustment was made in part to allow faculty’s focus to fall solely on the in-person instruction. view article arw

Katy ISD announced Monday morning that it has received more than $1.1 million in funding for taking action to save energy throughout its facilities through the CenterPoint Energy Schools Conserving Resources and Energy Program. Its most recent rebate check was more than $450,000, the announcement said.  “A portion of these funds are reinvested into the energy program, while the majority goes to the general operating fund (GOF) which supports students and teachers,” said Katy ISD Chief of Operations Ted Vierling. view article arw

Caution!- js - The FBI is investigating a ransomware attack on Weslaco ISD's computer network system on Monday. "The Weslaco ISD computer network has been attacked by ransomware and the FBI is investigating the matter. We do not know the extent of the attack and we are working to contain the threat. School instruction may have been disrupted for some students this morning. The District has since made adjustments and online learning is now taking place." According to a statement by Weslaco ISD.   The district will keep the public updated as they continue to resolve the issue.  view article arw

The Weslaco Independent School District network was attacked on Monday morning. According to the district, the network was attacked by ransomware and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is investigating. view article arw