FAQ | FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS:
What measures will be in place to ensure a safe environment?
Following the Governor’s mandate, wearing a face covering is expected most of the time while in any school building and is recommended in many outdoor settings. Social distancing is an expectation at all times, including directed traffic flow in hallways and common areas. Hand hygiene practices will be taught and encouraged. Hand sanitizer and/or hand washing stations are located in all classrooms. More frequent cleaning of high-touch surfaces will take place throughout the day. To the extent possible, students will remain with a common cohort of classmates.
Will health and safety training be provided for all staff and students?
Yes, our school nurses receive weekly updates from the Minnesota Department of Health and will provide a training for all MPS staff this fall during our back to school workshop week.
How many students will be assigned to each classroom?
The number of students we can comfortably space out in classrooms and maintain the recommended 6-foot social distancing was a big driver in how we developed our Hybrid Learning model. In our learning model, elementary classrooms will have 15-16 students per classroom and secondary classrooms will have 18-20 students.
Will cafeterias be open, and will school lunches be served?
Hot lunches will be offered to all students each day. Lunches will be available to all students, whether they are attending in person or remotely on any given day. Where lunch is served will vary by building, based on the amount of space they have available in the cafeteria and if we are able to provide social distancing in that location.
Will bus transportation be provided for qualified students?
Bussing will be provided for any student who needs it. To help us reduce the length and number of routes needed and maintain social distancing, we appreciate families who are able to arrange alternative transportation to do so while we operate in a Hybrid model. For example, some students may ride bike, walk, or be dropped off and picked up by their parents.
Will students have recess or the ability to play and socialize with other students?
Yes! We will continue to have recess, though with some changes; we’ll schedule smaller groups at a time in the outdoor play areas and will rotate assigning areas of the playground to cohorts to use.
What happens if a student or a teacher tests positive for COVID-19? Will the entire classroom have to quarantine? What if multiple classrooms and students/staff are impacted?
- We will work with Public Health and follow the MDH guidance with any positive cases.
- If a known exposure occurs in a classroom (from staff or students), close contacts will be quarantined at home for 14 days. While in quarantine, students will participate in Distance Learning activities.
- Close contacts are defined as someone who was within 6 feet of an infected person for at least 15 minutes starting from 48 hours before illness onset until the time the patient is isolated testing is recommended for all close contacts of confirmed COVID-19 cases.
What online learning management system will be used to support elementary students?
At all learning levels, we offer students Microsoft Teams account where they can attend live video and/or audio calls with our staff and their classmates. PreK-grade 4 students are also able to access SeeSaw accounts, where staff can share pre-recorded video and/or audio lessons and messages. Students and families are able to respond to lessons posted by teachers with video and/or audio or text.
What online learning management system will be used to support secondary students?
At all learning levels, we offer students Microsoft Teams account where they can attend live video and/or audio calls with our staff and their classmates. Students in grades 5-12 also access and respond to lessons, assignments, and assessments in Schoology.
How will teachers address any potential learning needs from the school closure last spring?
Our teachers are working hard in preparation for instruction this fall. They are reviewing curriculum alignment and pacing guides to ensure any gaps in instruction from last spring are addressed this fall.
Will NWEA/MCA be administered in 2020-2021?
Yes, while we were unable to administer our end-of-year NWEA or MCA assessments, we are scheduling our regular assessment schedule this year. Students will be able to complete assessments on days they are at school.
Can students change their commitment from In-Person Learning to Learn@Home after the start of the school year?
Because of the way courses are scheduled, we are asking families to commit to a learning model for a minimum of one 9-week academic quarter for grades K-8 and one academic semester at the high school.
How do parents commit to an instructional model of choice for their child?
Please contact your child’s school by August 14 if you would like to learn more about the Learn@Home option. Families who do not request Learn@Home will be scheduled for the District in-person learning model, which could rotate between Face-to-Face, Hybrid, and Distance Learning.