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Catholic Diocese 1st to Take Advantage of Paxton Exemption on School Reopenings

In Texas, virtual learning isn’t a must for all schools. Catholic schools in the diocese of Dallas will continue with their plans for the in-person reopening of classes in the fall.

The school superintendent, Dr. Matt Vereecke, explained that public schools face different challenges than the 33 Catholic schools that operate in the 9 counties that make up the diocese.

“Diocesan schools have smaller classes, different facilities and more flexibility to adapt to the current health concerns,” Vereecke said in an announcement to the community this week. 

In a guidance letter to religious and private schools in Texas about reopening, Attorney General Ken Paxton said, “in accordance with the protections granted by the First Amendment and Texas law, this guidance allows religious private schools to determine for themselves when to reopen free from any government mandate or interference.”

The plans for starting the school year include a start date of Aug. 19 for all diocesan elementary schools that are not in Dallas County.

All diocesan elementary schools in Dallas County may begin in-person instruction as early as Sept. 2. 

Either way, the Catholic schools will have a two-week phase in for full-time instruction so that students and parents can be trained on school safety and health protocols.

Face coverings will be required for individuals inside school buildings. There will be no sports activities this fall for grade schools.

All individuals will go through health screenings each day, a mandatory sick leave will be enforced and details will be shared by the school principal when and if someone tests positive, the letter also stated.

If parents feel the protocols do not fit their needs, they may opt for remote learning. 

Here’s more coverage on schools reopening in Texas and keeping your kids learning this summer. 

Easy Ways to Keep Your Kids Learning This Summer

Tarrant County Schools’ In-Person Reopening Delayed

New TEA Guidance Does Little to Allay Teacher Fears

RA Staff
RA Staff
Written by RA News staff.


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