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Superintendent's Update 9-21-2020
Stacey Austing-Jacobson
Monday, September 21, 2020

Superintendent Update 9/21/2020 

As we finished up Week 3, we are beginning to see some small outbreaks of COVID-19 positive diagnosis that are being reported to us by parents.  This has become very common in most school districts.  We have been very quick to trace and isolate these students. If parents continue to report these cases to us and we continue to social distance and wear masks in our schools we should be able to continue our current educational model. 

As reported last week, our numbers are stabilizing in Stearns County.  The number continues to hold just under the threshold of going to phase 3 of our policy options. This past week the number was 19.70. We are also seeing the numbers go down in our district.  Stearns County reports that no cluster outbreaks have occurred such as in a food processing plant or any other large employer.  Most increases now are through community transmissions such as weddings, showers, birthday parties, etc.  Please take the appropriate steps when attending these events. 

It is important to note that we could change very quickly depending upon a significant outbreak either in the county or in our district.  Two weeks there was 1 school district that had a number higher than 50.  This past week, there were 6 school districts with a number higher than 50.  These 6 school districts along with 3 districts with a number between 30-50 would show a total of 9 school districts in the state of Minnesota that are distance learning at the middle school/high school. This represents slightly more than 10% of the school districts in Minnesota. 

Many of you have heard by now that we started offering free breakfast and lunches to all students today.  This was a continuation of a waiver by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). This program will be in place until the funding of this program is gone.  The expected date for the funding to be gone is December 31. We ask that parents continue to fill out the applications for Free/Reduced lunch and have money in students' accounts in case we have to quickly go back to our traditional programming for school breakfast and lunches. Hopefully the funds will be in place when the students go on break before Christmas on December 22. 

We also continue to ask that you please continue to monitor your child(ren)’s health before you send them off to school. It has been those vigilant parents that have held their children at home while they were sick and get tested that has allowed us to keep school going. Also, make sure to wash their masks on a weekly basis to keep them clean. 

If you have any questions or concerns do not hesitate to contact me or any of the building principals.  

 

Greg Winter, Superintendent: gwinter@isd740.org

Chad Doetkott, High School Principal cdoetkott@isd740.org

Robert Anderson, Middle School Principal randerson@isd740.org

Terryl Pearson,  Elementary School Principal tpearson@isd740.org