At its meeting in December, the Irving ISD Board of Trustees voted unanimously to pursue District of Innovation (DOI) status. This designation grants high-performing school districts like Irving ISD the opportunity to create a local innovation plan with more flexible options, including some exemptions from state regulations previously offered only to charter schools. Districts with a DOI designation could have more flexibility in terms of school start dates and hiring practices. For example, the latter would allow the district to offer dual credit courses taught by college professors who do not necessarily have state teaching certification at the high school level and to hire industry experts who may not hold a traditional teaching certification to teach in tough-to-fill career and technical education courses.
The board will appoint an advisory committee comprised of members from the District Improvement Committee, Superintendent Solutions Council (current and former teachers of the year) and the community. The committee will develop recommendations, which will be incorporated into a plan that will be presented to the school board in April. To view the proposed timeline for the Irving ISD District of Innovation process, visit www.irvingisd.net/DOI.