The Potluck

Minnesota school reopening plans: Decisions, upcoming announcements from the state’s largest districts

By: - August 3, 2020 1:45 pm

Eden Prairie resident Sarah Sirek works on distance learning assignments while her private autism school is closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Mom Melissa Sirek said Sarah works best with her Barbie dolls learning alongside her. Courtesy of Melissa Sirek

Three of Minnesota’s 10 largest school districts have announced their plans for the start of the upcoming school year — and none plan to bring students back to school full-time, at least not right away.

Two districts — Anoka-Hennepin and Rosemount-Apple Valley-Eagan — will begin the year with hybrid learning for all grade levels, and Minneapolis will start with distance learning. Another two have released tentative plans, pending school board approval.

Parents, students and staff in the other five can expect updates as soon as Tuesday night, or as late as Aug. 21. 

Under Gov. Tim Walz’s executive order, school districts’ fall plans will be guided by local COVID-19 data and districts’ abilities to implement safety measures.

Districts will work with the state to determine if they can hold in-person classes full- or part-time, or if they must continue distance learning for the start of the school year. The Department of Health will consult with districts throughout the year to determine if they need to switch models, according to the state plan. Schools in areas with low transmission may choose to resume in-person teaching but are not required to. Parents can choose distance learning, even if the district is using in-person or hybrid models.

Check the table below to learn more about fall plans and upcoming announcements from the state’s 10 largest school districts.

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Rilyn Eischens
Rilyn Eischens

Rilyn Eischens is a former data reporter for the Minnesota Reformer. Rilyn was born and raised in Minnesota and has worked in newsrooms in the Twin Cities, Iowa, Texas and most recently Virginia, where she covered education for The Staunton News Leader. She's an alumna of the Dow Jones News Fund data journalism program and the Minnesota Daily. When Rilyn isn't in the newsroom, she likes to read, add to her plant collection and try new recipes.