Denton ISD will allow students who opt for virtual learning this fall to participate in athletics and extracurricular activities with one condition, according to a statement from superintendent Jamie Wilson.
In a video posted to the district’s YouTube page on July 24, Wilson outlined how students who learn online will be eligible.
The district had initially said it would not allow virtual students to participate in extracurricular activities.
“All I can tell you is this has been the most incredible journey any of us have been on, with regard to planning the upcoming school year and trying to keep you all informed as to what’s going on,” Wilson said. “We’re in partnership with our local officials from Denton County health services, and we are working closely together to make sure we stay on top of the rising [COVID-19] cases and transmission across our community.”
Wilson said students who choose online, or the “ConnectedLearning” program, will be eligible for extracurricular activities as long as they enroll and attend the face-to-face portion of the course.
Students who attend all of their courses online and do not access any classes face-to-face will not be eligible for extracurricular activities.
For athletics, students must enroll in an athletics course and attend the face-to-face portion in order to play in games.
“If you’re in athletics and you take the athletics course that is part of your graduation plan, then that allows you to participate in those activities after school, making you eligible and allowing us to fall within the UIL guidelines for participation,” Wilson said. “We want to make sure everyone knows if you are truly a connected student, meaning you do not access anything at all face-to-face, then you are not eligible to participate in the extracurricular activities, because you are not in a course that has an extracurricular activity attached to it.”
Denton ISD announced at its board meeting on Tuesday that the district would adhere to Denton County Public Health’s recommendation to delay in-person instruction until Sept. 8. The first day of school is still scheduled for Aug. 26 and will be remote.
In the YouTube video, Wilson also urged the community to wear masks, avoid large gatherings, and practice social distancing and good hygiene.