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Coronavirus: Minnesota considering 3 scenarios for 2020-21 school year

A decision will be made by late July.

The Minnesota Department of Education (MDE) is considering three scenarios for what school could look like when students return in the fall.

MDE, with the Minnesota Department of Health, is mulling three options for the 2020-21 school year, according to a press advisory sent to media outlets on Monday. They are: 

  • All students return to school buildings
  • A hybrid model of in-school and distance learning
  • Only distance learning

A decision on which education delivery model will be safest during the COVID-19 pandemic will be announced by the week of July 27, MDE said.

Since planning for the fall is already underway in many districts, MDE is giving school districts guidance so they can start contingency planning for each of the three possible scenarios.

Schools moved to distance learning in mid-March, finishing out the school year with students learning from home, which cause frustrations for teachers, parents and students.

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In May, Gov. Tim Walz signed an executive order allowing schools to use a hybrid model of learning, including some in-person learning, for summer programming. 

MDE says it is using what it learned from the distance-learning model and the hybrid model that's being used in summer school to "ensure that our students continue to receive a high-quality education and our staff have what they need to support their students," the press advisory said.

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