An e-newsletter from Mounds View Public Schools
September 4, 2020
School starts Tuesday, September 8
All schools begin the 2020-21 school year on Tuesday, September 8. The District will open the school year using the distance learning model, before transitioning to a blended (hybrid) model. Families should expect all students will be in distance learning through September 18.
Ready for September 21: 10 things to know
Mounds View Public Schools staff are working daily to demonstrate that dozens of safety measures are in place so students and staff can enter schools for blended learning with greater confidence on Monday, September 21. Check out just a few health and safety issues to know.
COVID Response teams
This year, the District’s Health and Safety Committee is expanding to become a Districtwide COVID-19 Response Team. The group’s goal is to address concerns related to health, safety and the operation of our schools. Features of this team include the following:
- Representation from all employee groups
- COVID Coordinators at each site
- Expansion of site-based health and safety committees. All employees planning to work in person are welcome to join these non-mandatory, voluntary committees.
- Support for site-based health and safety question and answer sessions which are being held at all sites prior to the start of the school year.
Symptomatic students or staff
What’s the process schools will use for supporting and possibly isolating people with coronavirus-like symptoms in schools? The Minnesota Department of Health has published a Decision Tree that all schools in the District will follow for guiding people with symptoms or for people who have had close contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19. In general, MDH’s guidance is that if you are ill -- even a little bit ill -- you should stay away from school.
Daily health screenings
Parents will be reminded regularly to perform a daily health screening for their students. Schools will send home or deny entry to anyone who has symptoms consistent with COVID-19 and will reference the exclusion criteria in this document to determine when they may return.
See 2020-21 calendars for each grade level and learning model below. Calendars have also been posted on the District website. Contact your child’s school with any questions.
Schools are distributing materials at various times throughout the next week. If you did not receive this information, contact your child’s school directly. You can contact them by calling the main phone line on their website or by emailing them at firstname.lastname@example.org (example: email@example.com).
Meals will be available for Mounds View District students on Wednesday, September 9 and Wednesday, September 16 for curbside pickup from 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. at these sites:
- Chippewa Middle School (5000 Hodgson Road, North Oaks)
- Edgewood Middle School (5100 Edgewood Dr, Mounds View)
- Highview Middle School (2300 7th St NW, New Brighton)
- Irondale High School (2425 Long Lake Rd, New Brighton)
Nutrition staff will ask your student’s name and pin number when you receive the meals. Meals will be FREE to any student who qualifies for free or reduced priced meals. Click here to complete the 2021-21 Application for Education Benefits form.
For those who are not on the free or reduced program, the prices are as follows:
- Breakfast is $1.65 and lunch is $2.70
- On September 9, the bag will contain six breakfasts and six lunches = $26.10
- On September 16, the bag will contain three breakfasts and three lunches = $13.05
The USDA announced a potential extension of the “Free Meals for Kids” program until December 31, 2020. This program provided free meals for all students, regardless of eligibility, in the spring and summer. We have been advised by the Minnesota Department of Education to continue charging for meals as directed by the USDA until guidance for this extension is given to school districts in Minnesota. We will share further updates and details once we receive guidance from the State of Minnesota.
On schedule, bus passes will be mailed out the week of September 7. Letters will go out to families of special ed students this same week.
The Transportation Department will continue to accept new registrations and change requests, but will not be processing any of these between the dates of September 4 and September 30. This a safety issue, allowing time for drivers to practice their routes, and create seat assignments based on physical distance. Changes will resume on October 1.
Families who want busing and reside in a FEE AREA will need to pay for busing (if not done so already). Payment can be made by check, payable to “Mounds View Public Schools” and delivered to your child’s school or online using this PayPal link. Those families that qualify for Educational Benefits will qualify for free busing as well. Apply for benefits here.
FAQs updated regularly
- Will I be notified of a confirmed COVID-19 case in my school? (It depends.)
- Will schools really enforce the Governor’s mask mandate? (Yes.)
- Has every school established safety protocols for non-classroom settings? (Yes.)
Families and staff have many questions and concerns about what learning models and safety precautions will look like this fall. A Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) document is being regularly updated with questions and answers compiled using the most common questions received through email and the comment form on the reopening website, where additional resources are also available.
Learning model tracker
Minnesota school districts are asked to determine their learning model based on local health data and the number of positive cases in their county over a period of two weeks. The state will provide updated numbers every week. School districts are permitted to take a more restrictive approach at any time, but cannot take a less restrictive approach. Distance learning is always an option families can choose.
Our latest number: 18.56
Our current learning model: Blended (hybrid) learning is postponed for all students as the District takes more time to demonstrate plans meet or exceed safety requirements. Schools will begin the year with distance learning September 8 through September 18.
Track results this fall at www.moundsviewschools.org/learningmodeltracker.
MVSEF’s support during COVID-19
The Mounds View Schools Education Foundation (MVSEF) recognizes the increased importance of the Foundation’s role in supporting the students and staff in these unprecedented times. We understand that unforeseen expenses will be incurred to meet the challenges in the 2020-21 school year and we are prepared to help subsidize some of these costs.
Mounds View School District leadership has identified the need for unrestricted resources that will ensure reliable internet access for students and the necessary technology to support learning whether it be at home or in school. Additional expenses will also likely be incurred to safeguard the staff and students in the schools and contributions will be equitably directed accordingly. Learn more about ways to support this effort here.