FAQ and Resources
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Frequently asked questions about learning during COVID-19
The following questions and answers are organized by topic and will be updated as we learn more, or as new common questions arise.
- Why are K-5 students going back to school 5 days a week in-person when Scott Co. COVID-19 case rates per 10,000 residents are above the Learning Model Parameter numbers listed in the MN Safe Learning Plan?
- What are the latest travel guidelines for returning to school?
- What will happen when the MN Safe Learning Plan is no longer needed and public health officials determine we are able to return to normal?
- What if I have committed to enrolling my students in the learning model “dial” for the school year and then my child becomes sick?
Based on public health official’s evolving knowledge and understanding of the virus, the MN Safe Learning Plan has been updated so that elementary schools reduce the use of county data as a singular determining point when considering their learning models, and mitigation strategies are increased to help get students back in classrooms while keeping students, families, educators and staff safe.
The Governor said he believes schools are the safest and best place for many of our children to be and believes we now have the experience, knowledge and the resources necessary to make schools not only an emotionally and academically safe place, but a physically, health-wise safe place for students to be. All schools must now implement new safety requirements and virus mitigation strategies, including reduced social distancing, implementing a “rolling start,” regular site testing of COVID-19 for all on-site staff, and instructional staff are to wear both a mask and a face shield when interacting with students, among other protocols.
If the Minnesota Department of Health and the Minnesota Department of Education communicate that the MN Safe Learning Plan is no longer needed and public health officials determine we are able to return to normal at some point this school year, we will work with public health officials on a plan to transition students back to school for in-person learning when we are able to safely and logistically do so.
- How many students are estimated to be in a classroom at the elementary, middle and high school levels?
- Will you offer after-school activities?
- Why don’t all districts in the state implement the same Hybrid learning model?
- What will classes at Bridges Area Learning Center be like?
- how were a and b groups determined?
- WHY DID YOU IMPLEMENT AN AB FLEX AB SCHEDULE INSTEAD OF AA FLEX BB?
In-Person and Hybrid Learning models will be identical due to the ability to expand our program throughout our new building and operate classes at a reduced capacity. As a result, Bridges ALC students will not be divided into A/B groups. Bridges will hold Flex days (a.k.a. Jump Days) on Wednesdays when students will be released from school two hours early and they can continue their learning from home.
Because of the need for social distancing, every child cannot be at school at the same time. That’s why the Hybrid learning model designates students into two groups: A and B. The district has created balanced groups that keep siblings together. In order to maintain balanced groups, we will not be able to accommodate group requests or changes. A/B groups are posted in Infinite Campus.
The AB Flex AB model is being implemented to ensure an equitable amount of instructional days during the course of the school year for students in both cohorts. This model maximizes the number of days students are in-person learning. The AA Flex BB model would mean that some students would have 5 days in a row without any in-person class time.
- What happens on Flex Days? Are those just cleaning days?
- How does a student get selected to be in-person on a Flex Day?
Most Wednesdays will be Flex Days where the majority of students attend at-home and complete teacher-assigned work remotely (attendance will be taken). Some students would attend school in-person for individual or small group student interventions, enrichment or specific classes. Students who are in-person on a Flex Day will be released from school two hours early and they can continue their learning from home. Cleaning and disinfecting will be done daily, multiple times a day, not just on Flex Learning Days.
- What happens if a student or staff person is experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, or was in close contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19?
- How long are the blocks/periods in DLA?
- How Are Distance Learning Academy classes structured?
- What does the DLA look like for kindergarten students?
- What does PSEO look like for DLA students?
- Will students in the DLA learn at the same pace and and have the same lesson plans as those in the Hybrid model?
- If the district “turns the dial” to in-person learning this school year, will DLA students have the option to go back to school in-person?
The learning outcomes for the day are consistent with a traditional school day. The sample schedule outlines an example of what a student's day might look like in the elementary DLA. The DLA teacher will structure the day based on distance learning best practices and this will be communicated to students and families well ahead of time.
- The secondary schedule will follow the 6 period day (approximately 50 minute classes)
- DLA students will follow the same schedule that they would in the in-person or hybrid learning models.
Elementary DLA classes will be composed of students from multiple “home” buildings, depending on demand for DLA. The elementary DLA students will be taught by a licensed PLSAS teacher, but not necessarily by a teacher from the student’s home school. If a student chooses to exit the DLA, they will be assigned to a class in their home school. For grades 6-12, DLA students will have the same teachers as Hybrid students.
Kindergarten DLA will have a combination of “live” and recorded lesson times scheduled throughout the day. Whole group lessons (ie. Morning Meeting) and Small group lessons will be the base learning format for students. The DLA teacher will structure the day based on distance learning best practices and this will be communicated to students and families well ahead of time.
If the district is allowed to safely transition to In-Person learning as part of the district “dial” and the MN Safe Learning Plan at some point during the school year, students who are enrolled in the DLA will stay in the DLA. This is to allow for proper staffing ratios as we transition out of a more restrictive learning model, and also allows for greater consistency for students if case rates indicate we need to move back into a more restrictive model again.
- Will there be school bus capacity limits?
- How will social distancing be maintained on school busses?
- Will busses be cleaned and disinfected?
We ask that students maintain a social distance of six feet while waiting at bus stops and have their face covering ready to wear while riding district-provided transportation. The bus driver will load the bus from back to front to limit the number of students passing by others. There will be an X on seat spots that are not to be used for social distancing. Siblings should sit together, if possible. When students arrive at school, students sitting near the front of the bus will get off first. At the end of the school day, busses will be loaded from the back to front. Watch our video for more details.
Yes. We will disinfect our vehicles between every route and clean high-touch areas as often as possible. Windows will be partially opened for extra ventilation as weather permits. Watch our video for more details.
- Will Kids’ Company classes be limited?
- Will distance learning be offered/integrated at the Kids' Company school care sites?
- Where can I find more details about Kids’ Company?
- What will Special Education Services look like in a Hybrid model?
- What information will be used to determine if my student needs additional Special Education support on the Flex day?
- What will the Elementary Special Education Service Model look like?
- What will the Secondary Special Education Service Model look like?
- How will Special Education Services be provided in the Distance Learning Academy Model?
- How will Special Education Services be provided at ECSE?
All K-12 students will be assigned to Day A or Day B.
Some students will receive all of their Special Education services on their Hybrid in-person school days (example: A Day student receives all Special Education services while they are attending school in-person on Monday and Thursday).
Some students will receive Special Education services on their Hybrid in-person school days and Hybrid in-person on the Flex learning day (example: A Day Student would attend school in-person on Monday and Thursday as well as Wednesday Flex Day).
Some students will receive Special Education services on both their Hybrid in-person school days and Hybrid home days (example: A Day Student would attend school in-person on Monday and Thursday and would receive instruction via distance learning from home on home hybrid days).
Center-based students, with more comprehensive needs, may receive Special Education services on both Day A and Day B with Hybrid home distance learning on the Flex day (example: A Day Student would attend school in-person on Monday and Thursday and attend all classes, the student would attend school in-person on B days as well, but would only attend classes within center-based program and access general education course via online).
Elementary Special Education services will be provided via push-in to the General Education classroom or small group in a separate space. Elementary Special Education teachers will collaborate with General Education teachers to provide accommodations and modifications, and to provide access to activities and resources via Seesaw, IXL and Reading A-Z.
Secondary Special Education services will continue to be provided during their scheduled Special Education courses (co-taught classes, small group English or Math, seminar or other identified special education course). Secondary Special Education teachers will collaborate with General Education teachers to provide accommodations and modifications.
Students will receive all services online/distance learning. The current hybrid model at the secondary level will provide increased structure from last year which will allow Special Education distance learning services to be layered. During each class period students at home via Distance Learning Academy will have the opportunity for live/synchronous instruction with teachers each class period, each day along with instructional resources and assignments via Schoology. Students will receive daily teacher contact.
Hybrid and In-Person Early Childhood Special Education services will look the same with classes and schedules set up to meet the health and safety guidelines set up by MDH. Distance learning services are an option for all ECSE students. All ECSE students will continue to be assigned a case manager to coordinate Special Education and related Direct and Indirect services. ECSE teachers will collaborate with General Education teachers to provide accommodations and modifications, and to provide access to activities and resources via Seesaw.
COVID-19 Resources for Families
The following resources have been compiled by PLSAS School Social Workers to connect families to resources in our area.
WrapMN: Resources for students and families
The Children’s Cabinet, Minnesota Department of Education and the Greater Twin Cities United Way have collaborated to create a text messaging campaign, WrapMN, to provide streamlined information and coordination for identified academic, food, health, housing and student resources available across the state.
The goal of this campaign is to increase access to these wrap-around services by providing timely and relevant information to Minnesota students and their families. To opt-in to receive text messages, text Stu211 to 898-211
- COVID-19 Testing for Kids & Families
- Food & Necessities
- How to talk with kids about Corona Virus
- Internet & Library Access
- Mental Health Support
- Minnesota Resources
- Scott County Resources
The Minnesota Department of Health is providing opportunities for students and families to get tested for COVID-19 every two weeks, through the end of the school year. Families can visit a community testing site, order an at-home test kit, or get tested through your healthcare provider. All options are quick and free to you.
You can sign your entire family up to get tested at the same time at a community testing site. If someone in your family prefers to speak in another language besides English, in-person or language line assistance is available. Test sites are doing everything they can to make sure sites are clean, safe and comfortable for everyone.
Teachers, school staff and coaches are already getting tested regularly. While it is not a requirement, regular testing compliments other safety measures already in place, such as masking and social distancing, which all help limit the spread of COVID-19 and keep our schools and sports open.
Visit Getting Tested for COVID-19 or contact your health care provider to schedule an appointment.
- Belle Plaine Food Shelf: open 5-7pm Wednesdays, 9am-12pm Saturdays
128 N Meridian St
Belle Plaine, MN 56011
- CAP Agency Food Shelf | (952) 496-2125
712 Canterbury Road S.
Shakopee, MN 55379
- Jordan Food Shelf | (952) 292-8759
131 First Street E.
- Peace Center Food Shelf | (952)758-4688
313 Columbus Avenue N.
New Prague, MN
- Shakopee Community Assistance (SCA) | (612) 708-1668
350 Atwood St. - lower level
Community dining, food distribution, and diaper distribution
- CAP | Community Action Partnership of Scott, Carver, Dakota Counties
Scott and Carver County Office
712 Canterbury Rd South
Shakopee MN 55379
*Please call (952) 496-2125, and select option 1, to schedule an appointment.
Appointments are available:
Monday: 8:20am – 5:40pm
Tuesday-Friday: 8:20am – 3:40pm
Monday 8 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Tuesday: 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Wednesday: 9 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Thursday & Friday: 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
- HisHouse: www.HisHouseFoundation.com
HisHouse primarily focuses on the most basic necessities for people transitioning through homelessness. They have a resource center, as well as food for people who cannot access the food shelf.
- Lakeville Resource Center | (952) 469-3444
20730 Holyoke Ave Suite 139
- Neighbors Food Shelf (Dakota County) | (651) 674-0009
222 Grand Ave W, South St Paul
Monday-Friday 9 a.m. -12 p.m. and 1-4 p.m.
- Ruby’s Pantry | (651) 674-0009 | www.rubyspantry.org
- Second Harvest Heartland | (952) 447-8282
No-cost food distribution– 5:30-7:30 p.m. on the second Thursday of every month at:
17741 Fairlawn Ave
Prior Lake, MN 55372
- Prince of Peace Lutheran Church-food pantry | (952) 898-9311
13901 Fairview Dr
- ROCK (Reaching our Community's Kids)
16511 Anna Trail, Suite E
Prior Lake, MN 55372
Text line for food delivery: (952) 333-4827
Food pantry available 5:30-6:30 first and third Mondays of each month
- Parent Resource Program for families in Scott County who may be concerned about their child’s behavior (English) (Spanish)
- Webinar Series Archive: Mental Health Support for students during COVID-19
- Mental Health Support And COVID-19
- Scott County Mobile Crisis Services: (952) 818-3702
Canvas Health’s mobile crisis response team responds to mental health crises or emergencies with face-to-face assessment, intervention and stabilization services at home, school or in the community. Emergencies can be a behavioral, emotional or psychiatric situation needing a timely intervention to reduce the possibility of physical harm. Mobile crisis response staff will also provide necessary safety planning and short-term therapeutic services to assist in recovery from a crisis.
- Crisis Text Line: text HELLO to 741741
- National Suicide Prevention Hotline: 1-800-273-8255
- Dakota County Crisis: (952) 891-7171
- Tree House
Tree House is offering virtual support groups, fun activities, and mentoring. We are taking new students and can do virtual intakes with families. If families are interested to learn more or get their teens involved they can go to: www.treehousehope.org/teen-intake
- Southern Valley Alliance: (952) 873-4214
Amidst the COVID-19 virus outbreak, Southern Valley Alliance will continue to provide vital crisis programs for victims of domestic violence in Scott and Carver Counties. Our crisis line is open 24/7 and advocates are available to help. Southern Valley Alliance can help over the phone with: safety planning, emotional support, Order for Protection information and community resource updates. Online support groups will start in April.
- Minnesota School Social Workers Association-COVID 19 Resources
- Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) COVID-19 Hotline Open:
call (651) 201-3920 or visit https://www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/index.html for more information
- Scott County Public Health Community Health Resource Guide
Scroll to the bottom of the page and click the link for Scott County Community Health Resource Guide. This is a directory of resources available in Scott County for a variety of needs. English and Spanish versions available.
- Scott County Health and Human Services
- COVID Vaccine Information-Scott County