COVID-19 (novel coronavirus) is a respiratory virus with mild to severe symptoms that has become a global pandemic. Crookston Public Schools staff are closely monitoring information and recommendations from the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) and Polk County Public Health about COVID-19 in Minnesota and locally. You can find comprehensive information on COVID-19 at the MDH COVID-19 webpage.
Keeping Students and Staff Safe- Our goal is to safely reopen our schools in a responsible manner utilizing all available resources such as guidance from the Minnesota Dept. of Health, Polk County Public Health, and MN stay safe guidance for Schools. These practices include a prioritization on social distancing, limiting capacity where necessary, requiring face masks in school, educating students about best practices for staying safe, and working collaboratively with local public health to plan and carry out best practices.
Supporting Students and Families- We know how much our families and community rely on schools to provide education and a safe place for their students. This is why we have prioritized in each scenario a focus on taking care of those students who are the most in need of face to face instruction. In the limited capacity model (scenario 2) we prioritized our littlest learners up through grade 4 for five days of instruction because we know that these students need the most adult intensive instruction. We also prioritized our high needs special education students for five days of instruction because this group also needs the consistency and support of teachers to make progress.
Communication and Relationships- In all scenarios we prioritized communication and relationship building as a major facet of the work that we do with students and families. Building high quality relationships is needed now more than ever as we possibly move from scenario to scenario depending on the health metrics in our community.
Educational Excellence- In all three scenarios we worked to prioritize excellence in education. As one of our educators put it “it must be about the learning”. We have prioritized Scenarios 1 and 2 for the maximum amount of face to face instruction to improve academic outcomes. In Scenario 3: Distance Education we have retooled to focus on best practices and a greater focus on synchronous instruction to increase the academic progress of our students.
Flexibility- We know that what we start off with this fall may not be the model that we use even a month later. We are expecting the possibility of moving from one model to another throughout the course of the year. We need to be very flexible and be able to quickly move from model to model which is why we have set up our models to work as seamlessly together as possible as we will not have a lot of time to adapt from model to model. This movement will be entirely dependent on how well our community and schools do at controlling the spread of COVID-19.