Anna ISD District of Innovation Plan
What is a “District of Innovation”?
A District of Innovation (DOI) is a concept passed by the 84th Texas Legislative Session in House Bill 1842, which created Texas Education Code chapter 12A. This law allows traditional independent school districts to access most of the flexibilities available to Texas’ open enrollment charter schools. To access these flexibilities, a school district must adopt an innovation plan, as set forth in Chapter 12A.
Why choose a District of Innovation?
Freedom to make decisions about Anna ISD at the local level. A local school district may want to pursue specific innovations in curriculum, instruction, governance, parent or community involvement, school calendar, budgeting, or other ideas. Essentially, innovation plans are about local control. Anna ISD’s innovation plan will be unique to the school district and the community.
What areas of flexibility can AISD consider in its District of Innovation journey?
A District of Innovation may adopt a plan that includes exemptions from most of the same state laws that are not applicable to open enrollment school districts. These laws could include:
- Uniform school start date
- Class size ratio
- Minimum minutes of instruction
- The 90 percent attendance rule (but compulsory attendance still applies)
- Student discipline provisions (with some key exceptions, like the requirement to have a code of conduct and restrictions on restraint and seclusion)
- Teacher appraisal system
- Teacher certification (except as required by federal law)
- Teacher contracts
- Teacher benefits
- Site-based decision making processes (to the extent required by state law)
What legal requirements will continue to apply to all school districts, including DOI?
Policy changes will correlate with innovation plan changes. As a DOI, revisions to local policies may be required as well as adjustments to legal policies to reflect that some legal provisions may be affected by the District’s innovation plan. As the innovation plan is sculpted by the committee, the District will evaluate necessary changes to Anna ISD policies.
How long does an innovation plan stay in effect?
Under current law, the plan may have a term of up to five years, and it may be amended, rescinded, or renewed during that time period.