Optional Distance Learning

Optional Distance Learning
Posted on 07/21/2020
Optional Distance Learning

July 21, 2020

Dear Farmington Area Families:
 
I hope this message finds you and your family safe and healthy. I’d like to thank the families that completed our initial fall survey last week. The information provided was helpful for our initial fall planning.

During the week of July 27, Governor Walz is expected to announce a decision about how schools will begin the 2020-2021 school year. Our understanding, based on numerous calls with the Minnesota Department of Education (MDE) and the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH), is that it will be a state decision, not a local decision. Our 21 planning teams have been working thoughtfully to prepare for the three outlined scenarios: in-person, a hybrid approach with some students learning on campus and some learning remotely at home, and distance learning. The complexities are seemingly endless. We are working to find solutions to transportation limitations, health screenings, building logistics, and curriculum prioritization, to name just a few. Unfortunately there are still a lot of unknowns that will impact what exactly the fall looks like.

What I know for sure is that the Governor’s decision will be welcomed by some and not by others. The reality is that not everyone will be pleased with the decision, no matter what it is.  Please know that, as a district, we will do our best to provide the safest on-campus learning environment for our students and staff. We are committed to improve the distance learning experience for each student. Just as when we entered distance learning last spring, we are once again embarking on a journey that has never been taken before. We will not be perfect, but I promise when something is not as good as it should be we will work to make it better. I ask for your continued cooperation and grace as we work to support each student regardless of the learning environment.

No matter what the decision is about the start of the school year by the Governor, MDE, and MDH we know this year will look different. Our students, families and communities are facing unique challenges associated with COVID-19 and we understand that some families may not be comfortable having their child attend school in an in-person or hybrid model. We are committed to supporting those families through the creation of a distance learning academy.
 
If you do not plan to send your child to school in an in-person or hybrid model and would like to opt into the distance learning academy, please fill out this form. You may choose to opt into or out of distance learning at a later time; however knowing those who currently plan to engage in distance learning at the beginning of the school year will help greatly in the planning process.
 
As stated earlier, we expect to know more about in-person and hybrid options from the state the week of July 27th. If you would like to learn more about how we are planning for the 2020 - 2021 school year, you can find the Minnesota Department of Education’s Guidance for Families-Planning for the 2020-2021 School Year here.

We will continue to provide updates and information as it becomes available to us.

Sincerely:

Jason Berg
Superintendent Schools
Farmington Area Public Schools

Sign up for distance learning here: https://forms.gle/UGyftgfec8SgZEKc6

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