An e-newsletter from Mounds View Public Schools
August 28, 2020
Blended learning postponed
The District will open the school year using the distance learning model, instead of the blended (hybrid) learning model as originally planned. We want to take this time at the start of the school year to demonstrate that our plans meet or exceed the safety requirements from the Minnesota Department of Health and Minnesota Department of Education for the reopening of schools.
Families should expect all students will be in distance learning through September 18. Families will receive communication no later than September 18 about next steps for returning to school for blended learning.
Safe, healthy and clean schools
Will classrooms be deep cleaned by custodians daily? (Yes!)
Will classrooms receive fresh outside air? (Yes!)
Will hand sanitizing dispensers be available? (Yes, everywhere!)
Take a look inside a typical classroom and school to see the health and safety precautions that will greet students and staff when they return to school this fall.
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: 19.67
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.
FAQs updated regularly
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.
Typical back-to-school events, open houses and meet-your-teacher opportunities will be rescheduled and moved online for all schools. Schools will contact families to announce new dates and times.
School supply lists and help
All school supply lists have been posted at www.moundsviewschools.org/backtoschool. Need help with school supplies? The Good Neighbor Back to School Project takes place in August at the Ralph Reeder Food Shelf. Last year, this annual program provided school supplies to 900 low-income students throughout Mounds View Public Schools. Families needing assistance can register online here or call 651-621-6280. Want to help? School supply donations are needed. Make a donation at www.ralphreederfoodshelf.org or visit the upcoming events page to view an up-to-date list of our most needed items, drop-off locations and hours.
Childcare for Tier 1 workers
Mounds View Public Schools will provide school-age childcare (grades K-5) for students of parents considered Tier 1 essential employees/critical workers by the State of Minnesota. You can find the list of eligible workers here. If you are a parent of a student grades K-5, work in one of the jobs listed in the link and need childcare during school hours, you can fill out this form. Please complete your request for Tier 1 Essential Worker childcare by Sunday, August 30. Requests made after this date may be placed on a waiting list depending on available space.
Childcare will be provided at the schools children attend. Childcare is available for students from families that have selected the Blended Learning Model for school. Childcare will be available on the distance learning days when the District is in the Blended/Hybrid Model, and all school days if the District is in a Distance Learning model (Through September 18-and if conditions change).
Parents will be asked to provide proof of employment or ID Badge and a letter from their employer that verifies their position as a Tier 1 Essential Worker. Before and after school care will also be available through YCare for students grades K-5 for a fee. More information on before and after school care options is posted here.
Free and reduced-price meals
Families can apply for free and reduced-price meals for the 2020-2021 school year by completing an application for educational benefits here. In order for Nutrition Services to process your application as quickly as possible, please fill out and submit the form online. If you do not have access to a computer, you can pick up a paper application at any of the schools.
Due to the postponement of blended learning, bus passes will now be mailed to students the week of September 7. Letters will go out to families of special education students that same week.
The Transportation Department will continue to accept new registrations and change requests, but will not be processing any of these between September 4 and September 30. This a safety issue, allowing time for drivers to practice their routes and create seat assignments based on physical distancing. 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 directly or online using this PayPal link. Families that qualify for Educational Benefits will qualify for free busing as well. Apply for education benefits here.
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.
In normal circumstances, this would be the time we would be informing our stakeholders of the initiatives the Foundation would fund in the coming school year - Intentional Social Interactions, Laurentian Environmental Center, Music Instrument Program, Equity Promise Scholarship Program, etc.
However, these are anything but normal times, and therefore we will instead begin communicating to the broader Mounds View community the need for directing philanthropy to the Foundation to support our students in the new and varied learning environments.
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.