Weekly Update

Duluth Public Schools News Feb. 4, 2022

From Superintendent John Magas

Dear families:

On Monday, I had the opportunity to participate in a literacy event at the Gary-New Duluth Recreation Center. Students from Stowe Elementary had the opportunity to meet with and be read to by members of the Duluth Police Department, the city, and many others. They also were able to choose several new and used books each to take home. We were thrilled to see the big smiles of our learners as they selected books based on their interests.

This event was a wonderful reminder of the many important community partnerships, as well as the vital importance of literacy as a foundation for everything that we do to support the academic growth of our students and to prepare them as productive, engaged citizens. It was also personally and professionally fulfilling to be able to focus on students and their learning, rather than COVID-19 issues, if only for an afternoon.

That event definitely filled my bucket and I encourage everyone to find something that fills their bucket when they can.

As for COVID-19, our rates continue to be quite high, our projected rates are dropping considerably in the coming week. The St. Louis County Health Department projects that our school-based numbers will fall steadily.

We also remain very hopeful that our situation will continue to improve without interruption to any in person learning.


John Magas

If you have questions or thoughts about what's going on in our school district, email


Exploring SRO Effectiveness Community Report Back

Duluth Public Schools and Marnita's Table invite you to join us for small group conversations facilitated by the Marnita's Table team to share your questions, comments and concerns after exploring the results of our series of community feedback sessions and surveys about School Resource Officers and safety in Duluth Schools.

Please RSVP
Questions? Call 612-275-1678

Yes! The event is free and open to the public.
Yes! Good food will be provided for everyone from vegan to carnivore.
Yes! All ages are welcome.
Yes! We aim to create a safer space for all to provide an unbiased and complete picture of what everyone needs for a safe and welcoming school and work environment.
Yes! Translation and other access accommodations will be provided if you let us know ahead of time.

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Local, State COVID Data

Detailed updates are available from the Minnesota Department of Health and St. Louis County Department of Health.

Minnesota Weekly COVID Report - Includes Cases in PreK through Grade 12 School Buildings by County

Minnesota Situation Update

St. Louis County MN COVID-19 Dashboard

District COVID-19 numbers

These numbers reflect positive COVID-19 cases by site. The total includes all self-reported positive cases based on the date the case was reported to the school district. Not every person who reported a positive case was in a district building while contagious. These numbers include at-home COVID-19 test kits.

The CDC and Minnesota Department of Health only report positive cases where the person was inside a school building while infectious. The department’s numbers do not include positive cases determined by an at-home COVID-19 test kit.

They do this because there is not a medical professional present to:

  • Confirm who is taking the test,

  • That the home test has not expired,

  • That a proper sample is taken and more.

The CDC and Minnesota Department of Health is also reporting numbers that are at least a week old.

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Duluth Public Schools Seeks Community Members for WBWF Advisory

Dear Community Members,

Duluth Public Schools is re-establishing its World's Best Workforce Advisory Committee. In accordance with state statute and the Minnesota Department of Education:

  • The district advisory committee, to the extent possible, shall reflect the diversity of the district and its school sites, and shall include teachers, parents, support staff, students, and other community residents.

  • Whenever possible, parents and other community residents shall comprise at least two-thirds of advisory committee members.

  • The district advisory committee shall provide recommendations to the school board regarding rigorous academic standards, student achievement goals and measures consistent with subdivision 1a and sections 120B.022, subdivision 1, paragraphs (b) and (c), and 120B.35, district assessments, program evaluations.

If you are interested in serving on the advisory committee, please contact me by Friday, March 4 at anthony.bonds@isd709.org or 218-336-8739. The advisory committee will meet 3 to 4 times a year. The first meeting will be held on March 16, 2022, from 5-6:30 p.m. The location and additional information will be provided to committee members in early March.

Thank you,

Anthony Bonds
Assistant Superintendent

In The News

Teaching with tunes: Congdon Elementary kicks off Black History Month with hands-on lessons

Mr. Garland at Congdon Elementary uses music to teach his students about history. This month's lessons will focus on Black musicians that pushed the boundaries of modern music.

KBJR Article

Myers-Wilkins receives full-service community school grant

Myers-Wilkins Elementary School is one of 13 schools in the state of Minnesota to receive a full-service community school grant from the Minnesota Department of Education. Myers-Wilkins was awarded $486,531.01 over two and a half years. It is the only school to receive an expansion grant; all other schools that received a grant were start-up sites for full-service community schools.

KBJR Article

Mrs. Pilate's first graders at Congdon run little Beargrease Sled Dog Race

Congdon Elementary School first graders in Alaina Pilate’s class ran their own little John Beargrease Sled Dog Race Tuesday, Feb. 1.

The students worked as a team as they go through checkpoints and complete a task at each one. Mrs. Pilate’s class has been learning many standards and making connections to John Beargrease, an amazing local hero and leader.

Fox21 Video

Duluth East's Rachel Hagen is the Northern Star spotlight on Fox21

Duluth East girls basketball player Rachel Hagen has battled back from multiple knee injuries to become one of the top players on her team. When she was just an eighth grader, Hagen tore her ACL. She would rehab and eventually get back on the court as a freshman for the Duluth East girls basketball team. But then, she was dealt with another setback, tearing the ACL in her other knee before her sophomore year.

Fox21 Article

Denfeld Hunters alumnus Brett Larson is headed to the Olympics

Brett Larson is an assistant coach for the U.S. Olympic men's hockey team at the 2022 Olympics in Beijing, China. Good luck Brett! Duluth is rooting for you!

Duluth News Tribune Article

We Need Substitutes!

Make a difference by becoming a Duluth Public Schools substitute, our schools need you.

Licensed and non-licensed, a variety of areas.

Current Job Openings

Questions? Email: noncerthr@isd709.org or call (218) 336-8722

Duluth Public Schools is an equal opportunity employer.

Preparing In Case Temporary Remote Learning Is Necessary

Our public health officials agree that, at this time, students are safer in school than they are when schools are in distance learning for a variety of reasons. We will continue to remain in-person as long as we can safely do so.

At the same time, it's prudent for schools to make preparations and plans, should in-person learning no longer be safe and the need to move into temporary remote learning from home becomes necessary.

An overview of what temporary remote learning would look like is available online, and updates will be shared as necessary.

OVERVIEW: Preparing In Case Remote Learning From Home Is Necessary

Duluth Community Education Course Catalog

Duluth Community Education provides opportunities for all ages through classes and activities serving people’s social, recreational, enrichment and academic needs.

We got your learning, social and growth opportunities covered whether it is the arts or a new hobby, technology savvy, cooking or dancing, hot topics and community issues, health, wellness and exercise, sports and nature, new languages, music exploration, all types of yoga, aqua fitness, swim lessons, and much more! In-person, live online or webinars…

Register for classes online using VISA, MasterCard or Discover.

View the Winter 2022 Online Catalog

Register for Classes Online

Duluth Community Education: Building Bridges Through Lifelong Learning

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