Houston ISD board votes to extend instructional day in damaged schools

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Students in twelve damaged HISD schools will spend extra time in the classroom this fall.

The HISD Board of Education voted on Thursday evening in favor of a proposal that would temporarily extend instructional days to make up for instructional time lost in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey.

Students at four schools scheduled to start on Sept. 18 - Bellaire High, Key Middle, Mitchell Elementary and Northside High - would be in school for 25 additional minutes every day.

Students at the eight schools scheduled to start on Sept. 25 - Forest Brook Middle, Harris Elementary, Hilliard Elementary, Kolter Elementary, Liberty High and Scarborough Elementary - would go for an extra 55 minutes.

That extended instructional day would be effective from each campus' first day of school until the end of the first semester in December.

"We are very committed to making sure that whatever additional time is required for students will not be just seat time. There will be enrichment activities," superintendent Richard Carranza said. "Our teachers in those schools are being trained in trauma-informed pedagogy and curriculum, so there will be activities and enrichment."

The Texas Education Agency approved waivers that exempt students from making up the first nine days the storm took away. However, students at the 12 schools that suffered the most significant damage will have to make up any lost time beyond those days.

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