Conexión Del Rio / Rene Luna, SFDRCISD, PIO, contributor  

DEL RIO – As part of the process of seeking designation as a District of Innovation under Texas Education Code 12A, the San Felipe Del Rio CISD District of Innovation Committee has released a draft of the SFDRCISD Local Innovation Plan. Through their discussions, the District of Innovation Advisory Committee has agreed to pursue a plan that includes seeking exemptions from two requirements imposed by the Education Code.  

The first, seeks an exemption from §25.0811 of the Texas Education Code which prohibits school districts to begin school prior to the fourth Monday in August. An exemption from this requirement would allow SFDRCISD to collaboratively design an academic calendar based on the needs of and input from the school and community.

Secondly, SFDRCISD proposes an exemption from one aspect of §21.003 of the Texas Education Code regarding teacher certification requirements. An exemption from this requirement would allow SFDRCISD the flexibility to consider workforce professionals to teach CTE courses specifically within the Trades and Industry Certificates, Health Science Certificates and Family & Consumer Science Certificates for which a traditionally, certified candidate is not available. All other teaching assignments will require SBEC certification in accordance with state law. 

The draft of the Local Innovation Plan can be viewed on the school district’s website at 

To complete the next steps in the District of Innovation process, SFDRCISD will notify the Commissioner of Education of the Board’s intent to vote on this plan. The District of Innovation Advisory Committee will reconvene in March for a public meeting to approve the final plan. The local innovation plan will then be presented to the SFDRCISD Board of Trustees for a final vote. Upon board approval, the district becomes a District of Innovation and may begin operating in accordance with the local innovation plan, exempt from the identified provisions of the Education Code. The SFDRCISD Local Innovation Plan would be in effect for up to 5 years (2018-2023); and amendments to the plan may be made by following the same processes outlined by the Texas Education Code (TEC) 12A.