St. Michael-Albertville School District will close all buildings to students beginning Monday, March 16 as the state continues to battle the spread of COVID-19, also known as the novel coronavirus.
Gov. Tim Walz was joined by Minnesota Department of Education Commissioner Mary Cathryn Ricker Sunday as he announced the closure of Minnesota schools from March 18 through March 27. Walz said the closure – a complete shutdown of schools – will allow school districts to plan for “distance learning practices” beginning March 30, meaning buildings will be closed to kids beyond the 30th but education will resume on that Monday.
STMA joined many other districts in canceling school March 16 and 17, ahead of the Governor’s recommendation.
Here’s the complete letter from Dr. Ann Marie Foucault:
First, I want to thank you for your patience, understanding, and cooperation during this unprecedented time navigating the COVID-19 pandemic. This is a rapidly evolving situation and changes are happening quickly on a local, state, and national level. Our thoughts are with all those who are experiencing the negative effects of this crisis.
Based on today’s press conference with Minnesota Governor Walz and Minnesota Department of Education (MDE) Commissioner Ricker, all schools across the state will be closed March 18-27. In addition to the Governor’s school closure, STMA will be closed March 16-27. Staff will report March 18-27. Staff will use the closure to create plans for distance learning should we need to close for an extended period of time. At this time, school is scheduled to resume on March 30.
During the closure, there will not be any athletic practices/games or other school activities. The Activities Center and STMA Dome will be closed. Kid’s Play will be closed on March 16 and 17. Additional information regarding childcare will be communicated in the next couple of days.
I know your children may be asking questions. Click here to review guidelines you can use when talking with your child(ren) from the National Association of School Psychologists. Below are some other helpful resources.
- MDH hotline for families 651-201-3920. Phone lines are open from 7:00 am-7:00 p.m.
- MDH Recommendations for Schools and Child Care
- MDH Latest COVID-19 Updates
- Wright County Public Health
- Center for Disease Control and Prevention
- Mental Health and Coping During COVID-19
The district has a pandemic preparedness plan in place and a task force of key district staff are following it at this time. I want you to know I am working closely with the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH), Minnesota Department of Education (MDE), Centers for Disease Control (CDC), World Health Organization (WHO), Wright County Public Health, and more as we prepare for the coming days and weeks.
I want to reassure you that the safety of students and staff is my highest priority. I am doing everything possible to keep your child(ren) and staff safe. I will continue to monitor the situation and keep parents/guardians and staff informed with updated information.
Thank you for your attention to this message and for partnering with us to maintain the health and safety of our students and staff.
Dr. Ann-Marie Foucault