Publish date:

'Relatively strong possibility' students don't return to school for 2019-20 year in Minnesota

The governor is not optimistic about the chances of returning to in-person classes.

Schools are closed in Minnesota through at least May 4 as teachers continue to instruct through online distance learning, but Gov. Tim Walz expressed doubt Thursday that students and faculty will be able to meet in person again this school year because of the COVID-19 outbreak. 

Gov. Walz said "in all candidness" that "it's a relatively strong possibility" that in-person classes are done for the year, reiterating his point by saying "I think the chance of being able to gather back at school is relatively slim." 

MCA testing and the alternative assessment Minnesota Test of Academic Skills (MTAS) were officially canceled statewide earlier this week. Those cancellations came on the heels of all school sports and activities through the Minnesota State High School League being postponed until further notice. 

"This is heartbreaking. We have a whole generation missing out," said Gov. Walz. "We would've seen state track records fall, we would've seen perfect baseball and softball seasons, but we're not going to." 

In terms of what the pandemic means for the graduating Class of 2020, the education department plans to support creative ways schools can honor students who are graduating. 

"Whether it's done online, whether students are standing in their driveway and people in the neighborhood can come out and clap and celebrate," said Kathy Mueller, education department commissioner. 

"Our schools and our school districts have been giving a lot of thought to this and they know their school community and we're going to engage with them in those conversations when the time comes."

Next Up

Karl-Anthony Towns

Timberwolves' defense fuels win over Pelicans

The Wolves' have bought in on the defensive end as part of a 2-0 start.

Minnesota Wild

Ryan Hartman's OT goal helps Wild stay undefeated

The Wild improved to 4-0 with a win over the Ducks.

Mar'Keise Irving / Gopher Football

Gophers pound Maryland to stay in Big Ten West race

Four different players scored a rushing touchdown in a 34-16 victory over Maryland.

Father Paul Kubista at St. Mary of Czestochowa

Controversy after Delano priest shares vaccine misinformation in church bulletin

Father Paul Kubista is pastor at St. Mary of Czestochowa Catholic Church.


Mel-O-Glaze, DreamHaven Books robbed at gunpoint minutes apart

The businesses were hit by three robbers just six minutes apart on Oct. 21.

Cambridge house explosion

Explosion destroys house in Cambridge, 5 injured

The explosion occurred early Saturday morning on the 33000 block of Hillary Circle.


Charges: Lyft driver sexually assaulted woman in her home

The defendant is being held on a $100,000 bond.

Pixabay - black bear

Black bear bites professional baseball player in western Wisconsin

The former MSU-Mankato star was bitten in his back.

mickey moore driver's license shared

Beleaguered Ward 9 city council candidate loses Strib endorsement

Mickey Moore has faced questions in recent days about where he actually lives.


Tim Walz

Gov. Walz closes Minnesota schools for nearly 2 weeks

The news conference is scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. Sunday.


5 things to know about Minnesota's new in-person school guidance

Walz hopes all districts offer in-person learning for all grades by March 8.

school, classroom, students

Osterholm: School districts should decide if they return to school or not

A decision is supposed to be announced "by the week of July 27."

covid, schools

Unvaccinated students, staff urged to take COVID-19 test 'at least once a week'

The recommendation is for students and staff, regardless of symptoms.

masks, schools

American Academy of Pediatrics urges masks for kids ages 2+ in schools

The MDH is working with MDE on health and safety guidelines for the upcoming school year.

Governor Tim Walz

Governor Walz to announce 'sweeping' education plan Monday

The governor will address Minnesota at 2 p.m. Monday.

school, students

Gov. Walz set to make schools announcement in press conference

He's expected to announce that in-person classes won't resume this year.