Medford Elementary Newsletter

2020-21 School Year - Vol. 1

Dear Medford Elementary Families,

Welcome to the 2020-2021 School Year! We are very excited to welcome all of our Tigers back! As we do this, we want to provide purposeful communication with our families about the upcoming school year. In this newsletter, we will share information about School Readiness Days, Arrival and Dismissal Procedures, The 3 Possible Learning Models, Updated Calendar Changes etc.

If you have any questions, please reach out via phone or email. (contact information at the end of the newsletter)

It's a great day to be a Tiger!

Josh Carlson

Elementary Principal

Who are the Medford Elementary teachers this year?

Preschool: Angie Bierlen

Kindergarten: Brittany Miller, Nicole Padgett, Danielle Jensen

First Grade: Kristi Hiatt, Meghan Laughlin, Mikayla Hoff

Second Grade: Sara Markham, Ben Olson, Malia Norton

Third Grade: Jennifer Lohrmann, Sara Milewski, Brandi Trapp

Fourth Grade: Ellen Hansen, Becky Peterson, Cindy Schmidt

Fifth Grade: Christine Bangs, Amy Hanzlicek, Jill Walker

Sixth Grade: Jennifer Lebrun, Melanie Feldhake, Anna Drake

Intervention: Jeannie Ness, Jennifer Werk

English Learners: Bonnie Ramirez

Speech: Jordyn Shanks

Special Education: Bridget Aldrich, Cassie Tegmeier, Mary Unsworth, Savanna Linder

Phy Ed: Chris Haakonson, Adam Slander

Art: Pamela Schmidt

Music: Brian Gustafson & Ben Beaupre

Technology: Jenny Kellen

Social Worker: Peggy Wetmore

Review of the three learning models.

In Person Learning: This is defined as every student coming to school every day. We are not as bound to the occupancy requirements as we are in hybrid (see below). Health and safety measures will be in place, and there will be very specific changes to every aspect of your child’s day.

-Students and staff will wear masks and follow social distance guidelines at school

-Breakfast will take place in the cafeteria/Lunches will be eaten in the classrooms

-Students will take a 25 minute recess break outside with their class only in their designated zone.

-There is a possibility that student dismissal will be staggered

Hybrid Learning: We have been working through capacity issues to determine the maximum number of students who can safely attend in person under a hybrid model that states we can operate at 50% capacity. A reminder that 50% capacity does not mean 50% of students. Instead, it means 50% of the space can be filled, per the fire marshal, while maintaining social distancing requirements. (click on link below for more information regarding our hybrid learning model at Medford Public School.

Distance Learning (Schoolwide): Following distance learning last spring, we learned from our challenges and will capitalize on our successes. Regardless of the scenario, distance learning will be an increasingly important part of our students educational experience. One clear message shared by students, teachers, and families was the need for increased collaboration with teachers and students, a high level of engagement, and rigor in our online environment.

Distance Learning (Option): Consistent with the MN Department of Education Safe Learning, Medford Schools has a deep desire to keep our students and families connected in our school community. Therefore, every family has the option to choose distance learning if that is their preference beginning this fall. If families do choose the distance learning model, they must commit for the entire 1st quarter.

Please click on the links below for more information regarding our learning models and the decision making model that will be followed.

Have you filled out the 2020-2021 Medford School Learning Model Choice Form and the 2020-2021 Bus Form?

Please complete this from at your earliest convenience as this information is valuable to our planning for the start of the 2020-21 school year. We ask that you complete this form no later than Thursday Aug. 20th. Please click on links below.

Daily Home Screening Process

Families will be responsible for daily at home health screening prior to their student entering the school building/bus.

Use this checklist every day before your child leaves for school to determine symptoms and/or close contact/potential


If your child has any of the following symptoms it indicates a possible illness that may decrease the student's ability to learn and also put them at risk for spreading illness to others. Please check your child for these symptoms.

  • Temperature 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit or higher when taken by mouth

  • Sore Throat

  • New uncontrolled cough that causes difficulty breathing

  • Diarrhea, vomiting, or abdominal pain

  • New onset of severe headache, especially with a fever

Close contact/potential exposure:

  • Had close contact (within 6 feet of an infected person for at least 15 minutes) with a person with confirmed COVID-19
  • Had close contact (within 6 feet of an infected person for at least 15 minutes) with person under quarantine for possible exposure to SARS-CoV-2
  • Traveled to or lived in an area where the local tribal, territorial, or state health department is reporting large numbers of COVID-19 cases
  • Lives in areas of high community transmission while the school remains open

  • If "Yes" is the answer to any of the questions above, keep the student at home and notify the school of your child's absence. Confidentiality will be maintained at all times.

Please contact our school nurse should you have any questions 507.214.6315

School Readiness Days 2020-2021

August 27th from 12:00-3:20 / Grades K-6

September 8-9 / Grades 1-6

September 8-11 / Kindergarten

Families will sign up for times via Sign-Up (Volunteer Spot)

Please click on this link to sign up for a time

  • Masks will be required during the conference with 6 ft. of social distance
  • A student may be accompanied by 1 adult. We strongly discourage the attendance of children who are not going to their own classroom conference.
  • A staff member will greet you at the door, and we ask that you please use hand sanitizer upon entering and someone will direct you to the assigned classroom.
  • Sanitizing time has been built in before and after each meeting.
  • Vision and hearing checks, bussing and lunch account setup will be completed at a later date.

*Please do not send locker accessories with your child this year. They will not be allowed to decorate the inside or outside of their locker.

*There will be no Open House this year.

Medford Elementary Arrival and Dismissal Procedures

While there are many changes, the school start and end times will stay the same as last year. (Although we are asking families that they do their best to have their child arrive as close to 8:00 as possible in order to promote social distancing to the greatest extent in the mornings). We will be staggering movement into the building with greater spacing between each group. We are fortunate to have large outdoor spaces so that students can spread out. To help with our staggered entrance, we will have morning "zones" at various spots outside around the school. Our Elementary staff will be out there on the first day to show them where to go!

Medford Elementary School Day Arrival: (We will be starting the year having all students line up outside at their designated areas unless they are eating breakfast)

7:45am-8:10am Breakfast Served in Cafeteria

8:00am-8:15am Staggered School Entrance Times

Medford Elementary School Day Dismissal:

2:45pm Staggered grade level dismissal times will start

Our dismissal times could change slightly in order to accommodate social distancing at the end of the day. The first group of students will be dismissed from their classrooms and walked out of the classrooms starting at approximately 2:45 pm. It will take time for them to walk out of the school as they will be guided.

In order to keep our hallways clear, we are asking all older siblings that pick up younger children to walk/ride home to select an area outside the school to meet each day and not meet them in the elementary hallways. We also are asking that parents do not enter the building to pick their child up.

Please note that the dismissal and arrival procedure may change/develop as we learn the best way to streamline our processes. Please provide any feedback to help us to continually improve and better serve our students and families.

A valuable message focusing on courage

Courage 101: Need a dose of inspiration? Take 20 minutes sometime in the next few days, sit down with your kiddos, and watch this. You'll cry, you'll laugh, you'll be inspired...perhaps even inspired to move outside of your comfort zone. Inspired to fail. Inspired to be ok with that. Trust me, it will be 20 minutes well spent, and if you watch with your kids, it will have an impact on their mindset for this coming school year.

Please note the updated school calendar by clicking on the link below.

This reminds me of the amazing and caring staff at Medford Elementary

Big picture

Important Dates on the horizon

Aug. 27: School Readiness Days (12:00-3:10) (K-6)

Sept. 7: Labor Day (No School)

Sept. 8: First day of classes for grades 7-12

Sept. 8: School Readiness Days (8:00-3:00) (K-6)

Sept. 9: School Readiness Days (8:00-3:00) (K-6)

Sept. 10: School Readiness Days (8:00-3:00) (K only)

Sept. 10: First day of classes for grades 1-6

Sept. 11: School Readiness Days (8:00-3:00) (K only)

Sept. 14: First day of classes for Kindergarten

Oct. 15-16: Education MN Convention (No School)

Nov. 5: End of Quarter #1