The Texas City school district is making changes to how it determines which elementary school students can attend summer school to avoid repeating a grade.

Until this summer, elementary school students had to receive at least a 65 percent in their courses to be accepted into summer school, where they have another opportunity to pass the course before being held back, spokeswoman Melissa Tortorici said. Middle and high school students were allowed to take summer school if they received a 60 percent and that standard is still in place, Tortorici said.

This summer, the district will accept elementary school students into summer school who received 60 percent or higher in their courses throughout the year, Tortorici said. The pass rates aren’t a strict policy, but a practice set for teachers to follow, she said.

The district made the change to respond to parent requests and widen the opportunities for passing a grade, Tortorici said.

“They’re still going to have to do the work to pass, but now we’re giving kids on the borderline more opportunity,” Tortorici said. “Below a 60 tells us a student doesn’t comprehend the material to move on. But if they’re 63 or 64 there may be a few skills missing and we can catch them up.”

Districts across the county have different standards for determining whether a student attends summer school. In Dickinson Independent School District, for instance, elementary school students must meet a 70 percent standard or they don’t pass the grade and there isn’t a summer school option until middle school or high school, spokeswoman Tammy Dowdy said.

Marissa Barnett: 409-683-5257; marissa.barnett@galvnews.com

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