Hopkins Back-to-School 2020-21 Information

We know families will have many questions about what school will look like in the fall. We will use this page to keep you informed.

We are pleased to share with you our Roadmap to Reopening Plan, which summarizes our thinking and planning for this coming school year. Please know that this roadmap is subject to change. More than 100 staff members (teachers, paraprofessionals, leaders, and students) spent many hours crafting this plan. We are grateful for their contributions and insights. Our process has been focused on delivering our Hopkins families and students the exceptional education they need and deserve in the safest way possible. 

Current health data and feedback from many Hopkins stakeholders compels Hopkins Public Schools to offer two learning models in the 2020-21 school year — Hybrid and Distance Learning. Each learning model includes a focus on academic instruction and a commitment to the social-emotional health of our students and staff. 

Specific highlights of our back-to-school plan include: 

  • While the first day of school will not change, all students will begin their school year with a staggered remote learning approach for 2-4 weeks — we are calling this our #HopkinsStrong Start. 

  • Hopkins will offer full-time Distance Learning as a choice for all families for the 2020-21 school year through our Royal Distance Learning Academy.  

  • Hopkins will also offer a Hybrid model, which prioritizes maximum in-person learning for our youngest students. K-1 will learn in-person four days a week and grades 2-6 will learn in-person two days a week. Students will learn through Distance Learning on days when they are not scheduled in person. 

  • If health guidelines allow and we have teachers and staffing to support, we will increase weekly in-person learning time for our K-6 students. 

  • All elementary students will attend school in their home buildings using a Classroom/Companion Classroom model. 

  • Junior high and high school learning offers several models with varying levels of in-person learning based on current health data indicators.


Roadmap to Reopening Schools Plan 

We want to give you time to review this information. Because family choice is important to us in Hopkins, we will continue to identify family options that will enhance our hybrid models. On Monday, Aug. 10. Please watch for a follow-up communication asking for your feedback and current commitments. We will seek your feedback on learning preferences, as well as offer families an opportunity to begin the formal registration process for Royal Distance Learning Academy (full-time distance learning).

Distance Learning Option
Regardless of how we are advised to begin the school year, we know some families will prefer a full-time Distance Learning experience for their child(ren). Minnesota’s Safe Learning Plan, as released yesterday, requires districts to offer a full-time Distance Learning option to families. We have been planning for this throughout the spring and summer. If you know right now that Distance Learning will be your preference for this school year, we ask you to complete this Request for Information form. Please complete and submit no later than Friday, August 7. Please know that filling out the form does not commit you to Distance Learning. We understand you may need more information before you are able to make a final choice. However, for planning purposes, we would like to get an early read on your interest in this learning model, so we can plan for staffing. For families who make this their final choice, we will likely ask for a minimum half-year commitment.

Social Emotional Needs are a Key Priority
Regardless of what school looks like, district and school staff are committed to supporting students’ social emotional wellness and offering resources to ensure as smooth of a back-to-school transition as possible. Supportsinclude social-emotional learning, a priority on building relationships, community-building activities, increased access to mental health/wellness services, and the creation of self-care plans for students and staff. Staff members will receive on-going professional development on social-emotional learning.Families and schools will work together to continuously assess how students are feeling in order to gauge individual needs for personalized support. 

Building an Anti-Racist Organization
We also recognize the specific socioemotional needs of our black and brown students during this time in our nation’s history. While institutionalized racism has existed for centuries, we have been impacted deeply by recent and widespread civil unrest. Many of us have experienced a heightened awareness of how oppression and privilege show up daily. Staff and students on the Wellness Task Force developed a comprehensive set of wellness recommendations for our district’s consideration. The foundational principle driving the plan was that it is essential to simultaneously consider the dual pandemics of COVID-19 and systemic racism as we design and facilitate high quality student and staff experiences. We strive to evolve into a truly anti-racist organization. We seek to meet the social, emotional, and mental health needs of students of color as well as staff of color. We will do this through explicit acknowledgement, affinity group opportunities, and growing our racial consciousness, love and empathy.

Summer Resources 
Due to COVID-19 and recent events surrounding the death of George Floyd, Hopkins Public Schools like to continue to make resources available to our students and families to help get through this difficult time. If you are in need of support over the summer, please visit The Loop for information on district and community resources. If you would like to talk to someone directly, please reach out to our summer support staff for any non-emergency and the support staff will return your message within 1 business day. This can be done by leaving a voicemail message at 952-988-5119 or by completing this form.