An e-newsletter from Mounds View Public Schools
Coronavirus (COVID-19) update: March 12, 2020
As the situation with the coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to evolve, we know there are ongoing questions about the potential impact to our schools. We are actively monitoring, planning and preparing our District in consultation with the guidance we receive from the Minnesota Department of Education (MDE) and the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH).
The information contained in this message is the most current that we have at this time. Please know that as we have new information we will continue to share it with the community and encourage you to visit www.moundsviewschools.org/coronavirus for FAQs and regular updates.
At this time, MDE and MDH are not recommending any statewide school closures. Although it is possible that a school or schools could close in the future, we anticipate all schools will be open when students and staff return from break on March 23. In the event of a closure, families will be notified with text, voice and email messages. Until or unless this communication occurs, all families should assume their school remains open.
Out of an abundance of caution, Mounds View Public Schools has been suspending all overnight, school-related air travel for students, including some overnight trips that were already scheduled. The national concerns related to coronavirus outbreaks in the U.S. and beyond are changing rapidly and have made the risks of travel uncertain and unprecedented for us. Please know this decision was not taken lightly, and it reflects our concerns for the health and safety of our students, staff and families. The District will consult with MDH and the Center for Disease Control (CDC) for guidance on when student travel could resume.
When students and families return
Spring Break is a time when many families and individuals will be traveling. Travel advisories have been issued and are being revised as public health officials continue to monitor trends. Travelers to certain areas or who have had likely exposures may be asked to remain at home or take special precautions upon their return. Public health officials continue to provide guidance around when these measures are appropriate and our district will support these public health practices.
Based on guidance from the CDC, schools are not screening or testing students or staff to identify cases of coronavirus. If there is reason for concern, such as exposure or a suspected case in our school communities, MDH will communicate with the District directly for planning.
Chromebooks and remote learning
When students return, the District will begin a phased process of assigning students a Chromebook to keep and bring home daily in the event that school may be closed. This process will begin with our high schools and will allow students to have electronic access to any online or remote learning opportunities that teachers may offer.
Preventing the spread of Coronavirus
There are steps we can all continue to practice and reinforce to prevent the spread of the virus:
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Stay home when you or your child is sick, especially if they are experiencing cough, fever and/or shortness of breath.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, or cough or sneeze into your upper sleeve, not your hands.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use an alcohol-based hand cleaner.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
Health office personnel will continue to monitor rates of absence in our schools and follow MDH protocols for reporting higher-than-expected absences. Health office personnel will also continue to follow public health guidelines for best practice in caring for ill students. At this time, that guidance includes separating students with fever and cough from those who are not ill and sending ill students home.
The District is continuing to monitor the safety and viability of large assemblies and events. At this time, MDH is not making a recommendation that events or extracurricular activities be canceled. The District will continue to look to MDH for guidance on social distancing and large crowd events.
As always, parents have the choice to keep their child out of school. A parent or guardian is to call the school’s attendance office each day the student is absent. If no contact has been made with the attendance office prior to the student's return to school, the parent/guardian must send a signed note to school with the student's name, grade and date(s) and reason(s) for the absence.
For the most up-to-date information, please visit www.moundsviewschools.org/coronavirus.