August 23, 2021

COVID-19 Operational Plan for Students, Family & Guests

Dear Laker Families,

Minnewaska Area Schools (MAS) is preparing to welcome back all of our students as we begin the 2021-2022 school year. The safety and well-being of every student, family, and staff member is at the center of every decision MAS makes. We strive to balance the risk of COVID-19 and the need for students to receive a quality education and all the supports that help our kids grow! The information below and attached is the result of the Board, administrative teams, and key stakeholders working collaboratively to deliver the safest environment while allowing the needs of our students and families to be met. We will continue to make adjustments as needed to keep kids safe while receiving a high-quality Minnewaska Laker Education!

The health and safety of MAS students and staff while providing a high-quality educational experience is always the top priority of MAS.

The MAS 2021-22 School Opening Plan was created using recommendations from the Minnesota Department of Education, Minnesota Department of Health, Pope County and Horizon Public Health data, and individual feedback from each family. This plan has been reviewed by our district Current Incident Command Team (CICT) and the school board members. As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to change rapidly, this plan will be updated to reflect any shift in protocol, guidance, and/or requirements.

Minnewaska Area Schools will return to in-person school operations and programming in the fall of 2021. This includes:

    • All students will be in school five days/week.
    • Normal start and end times will be in place.
    • Sites will return to their typical days and hours of operation.
    • Students in grades 7-12 will resume the seven-period schedule.
    • Students will have lunch in the lunchroom.
    • Students will transition from class to class, following a normal schedule.
    • Special area classes will be held in their classrooms.
    • MAS will continue to have COVID-19 positive students quarantine and conduct contract tracing, informing close contacts in order to monitor for symptoms.
    • Students and families that have COVID-19 safety concerns will have access to alternative learning opportunities. Contact your respective school office for more information.

Face Coverings are strongly encouraged, however, not required at this time. The Minnesota Department of Education issued guidance that highly recommends masks but isn’t making them mandatory; MAS plans to follow this guidance, with masks being recommended but not required based on current local COVID-19 infection rates. Face coverings are still required while on a school bus per federal guidelines.

 

Chip Rankin
Superintendent

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