Raider Update

A Weekly eNewsletter from Hastings Public Schools

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February 7, 2021

Message from the Superintendent

Good afternoon Raider Families!

It felt good to have the rest of our elementary students and 5th graders back this week, and the buildings were buzzing! We are so lucky to have the students, families, and staff we do in Hastings! Based on this week’s numbers and projections, our plan remains to bring back grades 6-9 and 12 in Hybrid on beginning February 16th and then grades 10 and 11 to Hybrid on March 1st. As we bring grades back, we need to pay attention to the weather. We plan to send messaging out before 5:00 am on a day where snow or cold would prevent us from having students in person. We will also use our website and Facebook page to provide updated information. Please keep practicing COVID response measures; social distance, wash your hands often, and stay home if you aren’t feeling well or have any symptoms. Remember, there are free COVID testing options too. You can walk up, drive up, or even test at home. Go to this link for more information.

I look forward to another great week!

Bob McDowell, Ed.D.


February is Black History Month

What began as a week-long tribute in 1925 to honor African Americans' contributions in the United States has been nationally recognized as Black History Month since 1976. That year, President Gerald Ford urged Americans to “seize the opportunity to honor the too-often neglected accomplishments of black Americans in every area of endeavor throughout our history.”

Based on the work of the Hastings Public Schools’ Equity Action Planning Team, district staff created a link on its Equity website with resources for staff and families to draw on during Black History Month. The link includes timely topics, movies, podcasts, and more. Questions? Contact Jenn Reichel, Director of Teaching and Learning (; 651-480-7011) or Gabe Moreno, Equity Coordinator (; 651-480-7482).

Transportation Update

Just a reminder, if you opted out of transportation in the fall for students in grades 5-12, the opt-out remains in effect while these grades attend in the hybrid model since bus capacity is limited to 50%.

For students in grades 6-9 and 12, updated transportation routing information will be available in the Campus Portal by clicking “More” and then “Bus Information” no later than Wednesday, February 10th. If your pickup or dropoff location is not accurate, please contact your child’s Building Office.

Courtesy bus routes will be running, and the schedule is available here.

Breakfast Update

Mornings can be crazy! We are offering all students free breakfast, so please take advantage of this option to ensure your child eats a nutritious breakfast. Studies have shown a link between nutrition and learning, a nutritious breakfast helps students be more alert so they can actively participate in class. Breakfast also has vitamins and nutrients for a strong and healthy body.

Pandemic-EBT Benefits for Families

Updates are happening with P-EBT cash benefits for families. To be considered, households must submit an application for free or reduced-price meals for the 2020-21 school year or be approved for Minnesota Family Investment Program (MFIP) or Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits. Benefits may be retroactive to September 2020. Families who received P-EBT benefits last summer are not automatically eligible. If you haven’t filled out an application, please do so to find out if you are eligible for assistance.

Hastings Public Schools

The Hastings School District consists of approximately 4,300 students. Please click on the links below to email the building principal or site leader. We've also included the phone numbers to the main offices of each of our district's sites: