AUSTIN, Texas - Austin ISD has announced that instruction will be virtual for the first three weeks of the 2020-21 school year.
AISD made the announcement on their website, saying that due to the public health conditions in Travis County, the district will be suspending in-person education and delivering virtual instruction for the first three weeks.
According to the Austin-Travis County COVID-19 dashboard, Travis County has 15,445 reported cases of COVID-19, with 172 deaths and an estimated 11,862 recoveries as of Monday, July 13.
"We will continue to look to federal, state, and local authorities for guidance and directives," said the district in the announcement.
The district says additional information will be coming.
Austin ISD isn't the only district choosing virtual instruction at the beginning of the fall semester.
Round Rock ISD superintendent Dr. Steve Flores said during Monday night's school board meeting that the district will start school virtually during the first three weeks. He says that will give the district time to see if conditions have improved and to make sure campuses are ready to welcome back students and staff.
Round Rock ISD will begin the year on Thursday, August 20 and Flores says they currently have no plans to alter school breaks or extend the year.
Last week, the Texas Education Agency announced that Texas schools must give parents the option to choose remote learning for their children. They must also make daily on-campus learning available.
Parents can opt out of on-campus learning, choosing distance learning at any time. They may be asked to commit to a full grading period, but will not have to make that commitment more than two weeks in advance.
Under new TEA guidelines, anyone entering a school campus must be screened for COVID-19 symptoms and will be required to wear a mask as long as Abbott's order remains in place. There will be exceptions as noted in Abbott’s order.
The TEA guidelines came after the Texas State Teachers Association and Texas American Federation of Teachers came out against school reopenings. TSTA is asking Abbott to remove his mask exemption for children under age ten, saying teachers must be given the authority to decide whether young children should wear masks in their classroom.
FOX 7 Austin is working to keep you up to date with coronavirus, with both local and national developments. You can also get the latest COVID-19 news from around the country at coronavirusnow.com.