Harmony Public Schools announced to parents this week that it will offer full virtual learning to eligible students beginning Monday, Oct. 4.
The announcement was the result of the signing of Senate Bill 15 (SB15) last week by Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, which provided funding for Texas public schools wishing to offer online learning during the 2021-22 school year.
Under the law, public schools can enroll up to 10 percent of their student body in online learning. To be eligible to participate and remain in virtual learning, students must meet all of the following criteria:
- Students must have passed the most recent STAAR exams (if applicable to grade level). If student did not take STAAR, NWEA grade-level proficiency is required, AND;
- Students must have earned a “C” grade of higher in “foundation curriculum” courses taken virtually or remotely in the previous school year (ex. Math, reading), AND;
- Students must have no more than 10% unexcused absences during the previous school year, and maintain less than 10 unexcused absences in a six-month period.
Harmony also will continue to offer its “remote conferencing” option on an as-needed basis for students who remain on-campus, but may need to learn from home on a short-term basis. Under this program, students can learn from home for up to 20 instructional days if they have a pre-existing medical condition, or are forced to quarantine due to positive COVID-19 diagnosis or exposure. Additional days may be granted upon TEA approval with required documentation.
Harmony Public Schools is a Texas-born, Texas-wide public charter school system with campuses serving PreK-Grade 12 students in 23 cities across the state, including Greater Houston, DFW, San Antonio, Austin, El Paso, Waco, Lubbock, Odessa, Bryan, Beaumont, and the Rio Grande Valley. Harmony’s curriculum places a heavy focus on STEM skills, Character Education, project-based learning, and college readiness.