MHS Moves to Virtual Learning- Wed., Nov. 11

MHS Moves to Virtual Learning- Wed., Nov. 11
Posted on 11/08/2020

Dear SDMA Families and Staff,

Throughout the weekend, school administration has been monitoring COVID-19 data for our schools and our community. Unfortunately, the number of cases has continued to increase over the weekend. 

While student cases and exclusions across the school district are well below the thresholds set by public health, there has been a disproportionate number of staff cases and exclusions at Menomonie High School. While the SDMA Reopening Plan was built upon the premise of prioritizing in-person instruction, the health, safety, and overall well-being of our students and staff still needs to be our top priority.

Menomonie High School is at a point with staff absences that cannot continue. The district has made tremendous investments this year in hiring additional staff, providing cloth face coverings and PPE, and changing schedules to reduce the possibility of transmission, but the number of high school staff members out on isolation or quarantine requires a pause to in-person instruction.

So, here is the plan for the next few weeks for Menomonie High School..........

Monday, November 9- School will be held as scheduled at MHS. Students will have their last day of classes for the first quarter and receive schedules for the second quarter. There will be no in-person sports (practices, games, etc.) or other activities in the SDMA on Monday, and the school board will decide on Monday night whether fall sports and activities will be allowed to complete their seasons once MHS moves instruction to the virtual environment.

Tuesday, November 10- First quarter finals will be held at Menomonie High School. Please see previous communications from Principal Drake for more information about the schedule for finals.

Wed., Nov. 11 through Friday, Nov. 13- There will be no school for high school students who have completed all of their work for first quarter. MHS staff members will be working to support students virtually who have work to make up as staff also prepare for beginning the second quarter in the virtual instruction environment.

Monday, November 16- The second quarter at MHS will begin in the virtual instruction environment. Principal Drake will be communicating with MHS students and staff about the expectations for virtual learning. Staff members will still be reporting to work, buses will continue to run, and MHS will remain open with supervised physically distanced areas for students with special needs and students wanting to use the school district's network to gain access to virtual classes. Some staffing will be reallocated to support continued instruction at the middle and elementary school levels. Student meals will also be made available for all students with more information to be shared this week by SDMA School Nutrition Director Michelle Kloser.

This move to the virtual instruction environment will last until at least Monday, November 30. School administration will continue to monitor circumstances and communicate with the Dunn County Health Department about COVID-19 in our schools and community. Weekly updates will continue, and it can be expected that a decision about possibly returning to in-person learning at MHS will be made by Wednesday, November 25. It is very possible that virtual learning at MHS will continue beyond November 30.

At this time, other schools in the SDMA will continue with in-person instruction. Please understand, however, that a continued escalation of cases may lead to additional school closures in the near future. With deer hunting and the Thanksgiving holiday coming up, it will be very important that people avoid gatherings, wash up, mask up, and back up if we want our schools to stay open.

Thank you for your understanding and continued support of our schools.

Joe Zydowsky