Fort Worth ISD moving to a pass or fail grading system

The Fort Worth Independent School District is getting more equipment to help students learning from home. It’s also moving to a pass or fail grading system in an effort to make sure students don’t fall behind during this health crisis.

Fort Worth ISD has already distributed 7,000 laptops and hotspots to students who are now getting lessons online. But the support for students goes beyond the equipment.

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Superintendent Kent Scribner sat down with Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price on Facebook Live Thursday. He said the district has also served nearly 50,000 meals to students at 18 locations just this week.

In addition to launching their virtual classrooms, Scribner asked teachers to connect with their students and check on how they are doing emotionally. Many jumped into action.

Fort Worth ISD Headquarters

Across the district, teachers and administrators have been holding car parades – driving through neighborhoods, honking and waving at families.

Students will be graded on a pass or fail model for the rest of the year. Scribner hopes teachers will view that as a chance to try something new.

“Pass-fail doesn't mean lower your standards. It’s still an opportunity to give feedback, to give a lot of feedback. But we shouldn’t be grading kids on the stability of their home. There’s lots of stress. There may be illness, there's financial stress,” he said. “This is the time where leading with lessons is less important than leading with love.”

The superintendent said many of the old ways of teaching and grading in schools may never come back, even when students and teachers can return to their classrooms.

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