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Back to School Update: February 10, 2021

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Dear Saint Paul Public Schools Family:

As we continue the second week of in-person learning for some of our students, there are a few updates for families who are making the transition on February 16, as well as reminders for those already learning in person. For the latest information, please visit spps.org/reopen.

Important Dates:

  • Monday, February 15 (Presidents Day): No school for all grades and programs
  • Tuesday, February 16: First day of in-person learning for students in grades 3-5

Students in grades 3-5 will join the younger students at their schools starting Tuesday, February 16. This could mean transportation delays and adjustments to drop-off and pick-up procedures as schools welcome this new group of students back. Please remember that family members and other visitors are not allowed inside the school. Students in the Virtual Learning School in all grades will continue with distance learning as normal.

The same safety guidelines and procedures apply to all students learning in person. This includes conducting a daily health screening every morning, making sure students are wearing their masks correctly, reinforcing hand washing and social distancing, and following COVID-19 safety measures both in and outside of school. If your child is sick, do not send them to school and make a report using the SPPS COVID-19 Reporting System the same day.

Family Forum Reminder

Superintendent Joe Gothard and other Saint Paul Public Schools leaders will answer questions from families in a live online forum this Thursday, February 11, from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. Families who wish to participate can join using this link: https://spps.eduvision.tv/LiveEvents


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Transportation

Families with 3-5 grade students returning to school should receive a postcard in the mail this week with their bus route information. Students will have assigned seats on buses to ensure spacing and assist with contact tracing. Face coverings are required for all K-12 students and bus drivers, and strongly recommended for Pre-K students. If you have not received your postcard, check your Campus account or email transportation@spps.org.

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iPad Reminders

Students are expected to bring their iPads home each day, charge them overnight and bring them back to school the next day. This will also help your student be prepared in case of a temporary shift to distance learning. Review the Student and Family checklist for iPads at spps.org/distancelearning.

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Meal Service Updates

Free breakfast and lunch are provided to all students during in-person learning at every school. In addition, meal boxes are available to pick up at several schools throughout Saint Paul. Additional schools will have meal boxes available for pick up starting February 16; pre-orders are required to pick up from the new sites only.

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COVID-19 Student and Family Guidelines

Families returning to school should familiarize themselves with these guidelines, which are updated regularly and cover prevention strategies, health screening and monitoring, exclusion guidance, and the SPPS COVID-19 Reporting System.

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Health Screening

Families should conduct a health screening every morning before sending their student to school or the bus stop. School staff will also monitor for symptoms throughout the school day. If your child is exhibiting any COVID-19 symptoms, do not send them to school. Report the absence to your child’s school and submit a report to the COVID-19 Reporting System the same day for next steps.

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Face Coverings

K-12 students, staff and visitors are required to wear a face covering unless medically exempt, both at school and on the bus. Everyone should provide their own face coverings whenever possible. However, masks will be available at school and on the bus for anyone who needs them.

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Contact Tracing

SPPS follows Minnesota Department of Health guidelines every time a student, staff member or visitor submits a report to the COVID-19 Reporting System. In general, only close contacts will be notified in accordance with the communications protocol. If multiple cases are reported within a classroom or building, the whole class or school may be quarantined. Quarantined students and staff will shift to distance learning until they are cleared to return.