Important COVID-19 Update

Because the health and safety of our staff and students is our highest priority, district and school leaders have made the difficult decision to pivot to near system-wide distance learning starting Monday, Nov. 23.
November 10, 2020

Dear Hopkins Families and Caregivers, 

As you may know, the COVID-19 numbers are rising in our community. Today’s rate published by Hennepin County and the Minnesota Department of Health (now released on Tuesdays instead of Thursdays) climbed to 57 positive cases per 10,000 residents. Because the health and safety of our staff and students is our highest priority, district and school leaders have made the difficult decision to pivot to near system-wide distance learning starting Monday, Nov. 23. We expect to remain in distance learning through Winter Break, with the hope of phasing elementary and secondary students back in by January 25 (the beginning of Term 3).   

Here is what elementary families can expect from this 12-week plan: 

View a calendar version of this information. 

  • Early childhood and preschool will remain in person. Early childhood families will receive a separate communication. 

  • This Friday, Nov. 13 and next Friday, Nov. 20 will be elementary teacher planning days. Families will receive optional, asynchronous choice-board learning activities on these days. (Families receiving special education services will receive follow-up instruction from special services).

  • Monday and Tuesday, Nov. 23-24 will be mostly asynchronous distance learning days for elementary students. Elementary hybrid students should not come to school but will participate in Google Meet morning meetings. 

  • Monday, Nov. 30 will be the first day of distance learning with synchronous opportunities for all elementary students. This will continue through Friday, January 8, which is the end of the first week beyond Winter Break.

  • Kids and Company will remain in session. More details will soon be shared. 

  • K-6 students who are most in need of support will be offered differentiated learning including potential in-person support during this distance learning time. 

  • January 4-8 is the week we will reassess COVID-19 data and staff counts to determine if we will remain in distance learning or pivot back to hybrid learning. If the numbers support it, our goal is to phase students into a hybrid model no later than January 25. 

Here is what junior high and high school families can expect moving forward: 

  • 7-12 students will continue in distance learning.

  • We know some secondary students are not doing well. Those who are most in need of support will be offered differentiated learning including potential in-person support during this distance learning time. 

  • January 4-8 is the week we will reassess COVID-19 data and staff counts to determine if we will remain in distance learning or phase secondary students into in-person learning. If the numbers support it, our goal is to phase students into a hybrid model no later than January 25, which is the beginning of Term 3. 

How can we all help each other?
As the weather gets colder and we are spending more time indoors, it is more important than ever to practice the strategies designed to keep us safe. Our ability to provide in-person models relies on how well we follow these protocols when not in school. Your actions matter. We want to see our scholars return to in-person learning this year. Working together, we can make this happen.  

Because Hennepin County has changed the day it releases health data, we will update our Data Dashboard on Wednesdays at noon instead of Fridays. You can expect an update tomorrow with our community and local data reflected, and we will continue to update and share this data during distance learning. 

In closing
We are highly prepared for our move to distance learning. Thank you for extending grace to our teachers and instructional staff and providing them space as they prepare for this pivot. Your building principal can assist you if you have an urgent need. We know COVID-induced conditions have been difficult for students and families. Distance learning will not be easy for everyone. Our job is to support you. Your principal and classroom teacher will be in touch with specific information for your child soon.

Hopkins families, we appreciate your partnership as we continue this journey together. 

Hoping for everyone’s good health and peace throughout this time,

Dr. Rhoda Mhiripiri-Reed
Superintendent of Schools

Hopkins News Archive