To curb the spread of the coronavirus by maintaining adequate social distancing during voting, the Austin school district has made Election Day this year a student holiday.
District campuses historically have been used as polling sites during voting, which usually increases the number of people on school grounds.
“A student holiday for Election Day will decrease the number of people on campuses that may potentially be used as voting sites for the general election. It will also encourage a lower capacity for a campus and allow for greater social distancing for voters to assist in limiting the spread of COVID-19,” officials said in a written statement, referring to the disease caused by the coronavirus.
The holiday was originally slated for Oct. 12, marking Columbus Day, but the Austin Independent School District Board of Trustees changed it to Nov. 3, which is the date of the 2020 general election.
The board had discussed the change earlier this month, officials said.
The change will not have an affect on the number of instructional days or how much instructional time students are given, district officials said.