ARCHIVE: Everything We Used to Know About the 2020-2021 School Year

UPDATE AUGUST 19, 2020: A new version of this story with the latest and greatest details can be found here: Everything We Know About the 2020-2021 School Year

MOST of the information is still relevant in this version of the story, but an even more Timber Creek focused version is above. Assume all details in this story were accurate on August 6, but may have changed. This story is staying published as part of our Talon editorial policy.

Buckle up, folks. Here’s everything we know as of August 6, 2020 about the upcoming 2020-2021 school year. Be aware that any and all information on this page may change due to District, local government, State of Texas, or other officials making decisions. This is just what we know right now — and what we can try to answer at this time.

This document is sectioned into a large-scale FAQ, but is designed specifically for Timber Creek High School for the 2020-2021 school year. While much of the information should match exactly with the official word from Keller ISD, please note that if you see something that doesn’t match from this document compared to the official links shared below. Speaking of…

Official Keller ISD Back To School Resources

As of August 6 Back-to-School Updates:

General FAQs:

Question and Answer Videos:

Instructional Choice — Remote/In-Person Learning:

Safety Protocols:

District COVID-19 Response since Spring:

Take a look at our August 6 #AskTalonLive stream below.

That video will display on our YouTube channel here (Timber Creek Television) on Twitch (Timber Creek Television) and on Periscope.

We previously hosted a live streaming video Q&A on July 29, however many of those pieces of information have changed after the August 3 Keller ISD Board Meeting. At that board meeting, there was a change made so school will now begin on August 26 with August 26, 27 and 28 each being early release days to help students and staff get accustomed to new safety protocols and to also adjust procedures if necessary.

What You Need to Know About In-Person and Remote Learning Options

All Keller ISD students (as of the publishing of this article) will begin school on August 26, 2020. There are two choices for Timber Creek students: In-person (as in, you go to the actual building) or remote (as in, you’re learning online). We need to detail this a little further.

Every Timber Creek Student will follow a schedule of classes for the day. Regardless of if you’re in-person or remote, students will be expected to attend classes on their schedule in the time and order listed. Unlike previous online learning in the Spring of 2020, students will have a traditional grading scale, be required to participate in activities and complete assignments as required by each course. It’s school, just like you remember it.

Grades 9-12 Summary

In-Person Instruction: School as normal, with safety protocols in place.

Remote Instruction: Blend of live instruction, self-paced assignments, and practice through online programs.

  • Teacher: District-wide teacher facilitates online learning. (Teacher may be from home campus, but not guaranteed.)
  • Schedule: Will reflect a regular school day as closely as possible.
  • Grading: KISD grading guidelines will apply.
  • Assessments: Students must participate in District-wide assessments; some may require a virtual proctor.

Parents/guardians of each student must complete a survey from the new AERIES program (it replaced Home Access Center) stating where the student will attend in-person classes or remote classes before 11:59 p.m. on August 12. If you do not submit this survey, the system will assume you want in-person learning. There are around 50 courses, including most Athletics and Fine Arts, plus advanced CTE classes, that require students to be on campus or at KCAL to take them. We’ll get to what that means a little later.


We understand that choosing in-person or remote is a difficult choice to make at this time. The choice you are making now will be in place for the first nine weeks of school which ends on October 15. At that point, if your choice is not working for your student and you want to make a change, you will be able to do that. There will be additional information about how to make that change during the first nine weeks. But, for now – we are asking for you to choose for the first nine weeks. We need time to ensure that we have a schedule for every student on August 26 that reflects their instructional choice.

A quick note about Hybrid Instruction: When you are completing your AERIES survey, you will be able to see which courses are “hybrid courses.” Additionally, you can Click here for available Hybrid courses. It’s CRITICAL to note that students that take Hybrid courses will need to provide their own transportation to be on campus for the time of their course.

Hybrid Instruction: Schedule consisting of course-specific In-Person and Remote courses.

  • Teacher: Students will attend their home campus for selected In-Person courses, with safety protocols in place, while receiving Remote Instruction for selected courses offered online.
  • Schedule: Created individually according to a student’s graduation plan. Allows for unique courses that cannot be taught remotely to be taken in person, without requiring a student to be at school the entire day.
  • Grading: KISD grading guidelines will apply.
  • Assessments: Students must participate in District-wide assessments.

Too Long, Didn’t Read? Complete the survey by August 12 at 11:59 p.m. so we can complete your schedule.

In-Person Instruction FAQs

What safety measures will be put into place for those in In-Person Instruction?

Will students be screened prior to entering campus?

Will there be temperature checks to enter campuses?

What changes will be there to lunches to keep students safe and socially distant?

Will bus transportation be provided? What safety precautions will be in place?

What if the school suspects a student has COVID-19 and sends them home, but the family’s medical provider states they do not appear to have COVID-19 and releases the student to return to school without testing?


Remote Instruction FAQs

How will 2020-21 Remote Instruction be different from the at-home learning that took place in spring 2020?

How can Remote@KISD students check out necessary electronic devices?

I had plan to send my students to school for In-Person Instruction, but want my student to have their own device. Are there enough devices for all students?

How is Keller ISD managing all of the different online tools that teachers expect students to log into?

Will students receiving Remote@KISD Instruction be in classes with students who are attending in person?

What hours will students be expected to attend Remote courses?

Will students be expected to sit in front of a computer for seven hours each day?

If we choose for our student to change from Remote@KISD to In-Person Instruction at the end of the first nine weeks, will they still have the same teacher?

Will the same Advanced Placement (AP) and Pre-AP courses be offered to Remote@KISD students that are offered to In-Person Instruction students?

Will Remote@KISD students have the opportunity to participate in Fine Arts activities?

Will Remote@KISD students have the opportunity to participate in Athletics?

Will Remote@KISD students be required to adhere to the Keller ISD Dress Code?

Are current immunizations required for students participation in Remote Instruction?

How do I need to prepare my student for Remote@KISD Instruction for the new school year?

How will Keller ISD address the social-emotional needs of students learning remotely? (Recently Added)

Will drive-through meal distribution continue for those attending Remote@KISD? (Recently Added)

Will attendance be taken?

Will Keller ISD be providing school supplies for students receiving Remote Instruction?

The Texas Education Association (TEA) and other entities have referred to “synchronous” and “asynchronous” instruction. What do they mean, what are the differences between the two, and how will they be employed at Keller ISD?

Timber Creek Specific FAQs

When will students begin receiving schedules?

AERIES? Is that the new Home Access Center?

Exactly. It has a lot of new features behind the hood, but you won’t really notice them under after the school year begins. Please note, if you see anything odd in AERIES (Physical Education requirements, course credits, schedules, etc.) that doesn’t match up right now, just wait. For instance, high school parents may see a section on the Course Requests page in the Aeries Portal page that says Algebra I requirements not met and High School Physical Fitness Not Tested/Undetermined. Ignore that section for now, it’ll be straightened out as data populates into the new system.

What other digital tools are there?

KCLOUD is still around, and it’s been significantly upgraded to include “My Backpack” which will show you just the tools you need for each class you’re taking. Very handy. There are many other features that you might use as we get into the full school year. One note: Again, it might now be showing your correct data just yet. Data is still moving around.

When will Seniors get to pick their parking spots?

That information has not be finalized at this time. Both Mrs. Somerhalder and Mrs. Boehringer are working on it.

Oh yeah, parking! How’s that going to work?

That information has not be finalized at this time. Admin is working on it.

What about Senior Pictures for the Class of 2021?

Glamourcraft and Timber Creek are working hard to find an alternate venue and process to get these photos taken. But we don’t have the details yet.

Can’t you tell me ANYTHING about the Senior Class?

They’re a very special group of students facing a challenge unlike any most people have seen in their lifetime. We will make every effort to help them make lasting memories together and document their Senior year. But, at this time, due to the complex challenges facing the entire population, we don’t have details on anything specific yet.

Can you close this FAQ out with ANY good news?

Sure! We believe in the Timber Creek Community to rise to any challenge, and this start of the year is no exception. We know there will be growing pains, rough roads, and odd times, but we never have doubted the resolve of our administration, teachers, staff, students, parents and members of the community to come together (virtually or in person) to do what’s necessary for students to get a high-quality education. From Timber Creek Student Media alone, we’ve planned dozens of projects to help connect the school even if not all students are in the building. We will be working with Social Emotional Learning and providing more education on the world around us, as well as continuing to do award-winning coverage of Timber Creek clubs, sports and organizations.

You Matter. We believe in you. And, as always, we’re #ForeverTimberCreek

Final update 6:45 p.m. August 19, 2020.

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