Distance Learning Plan

  • Our Mission
    As a caring community with a tradition of putting our children first, we will:

    • Ensure all students attain their highest level of achievement
    • Prepare all students to contribute to society
    • Offer high quality opportunities for lifelong learning
    • Provide multiple pathways to excellence
    • Challenge all learners to meet high standards
    • Provide a safe and nurturing environment that energizes and enhances the spirit

    What is Distance Learning?
    Distance Learning involves planned online or teacher-prepared lessons that students complete when away from the physical school building. St. Louis Park Public Schools recognizes that education can continue even when students and teachers are not in the same location. Along with emphasizing the value of learning, using Distance Learning encourages students and families to share in the realization of our district mission.

    The St. Louis Park E-12 Distance Learning Plan will be implemented in the spirit of our District mission and will use key tenets listed below:

    • E-12 licensed staff will provide instruction and assignments via Schoology, SeeSaw, or Google Classroom, which will include the use of other supplemental learning and applications. All apps that are used will be available for free to all students during our time of Distance Learning
    • Teachers will provide high quality lessons and make learning resources available by 9:30 or earlier each day.  Your child should expect a daily connection and 2-3 assignments per week, per student. At the elementary level, students will receive daily language arts and math lessons.
    • Assignments will be designed to help us fulfill our mission and help students meet Minnesota State Standards
    • Our goal is that every child will have access to technology to connect with teachers on a regular basis
    • We will put our children first by regularly energizing and enhancing their spirit.

    Instructional Design Matrix:  

    Below you will find links to teacher resources that can be used as teaching tools and enhancements to your child’s learning.

    Early Learning Programs: 

    Elementary School - Kindergarten-Grade 5:
    Park Spanish Immersion
    Peter Hobart
    Susan Lindgren

    Middle School - Grades 6-8:
    Art & Design
    Gifted/Talented Program
    Individuals & Societies (Soc. Studies)
    Language Arts/Literacy
    Multilingual Learners
    Phy Ed/Health
    Student Services
    World Languages 

    High School - Grades 9-12:
    Art Tech
    Language Arts/English
    Phy Ed
    Social Studies
    Student Services
    World Languages/Cultures

    Student Expectations During Digital Learning - Click to Download: English | Spanish | Somali

    Distance Learning Expectations















    Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

    How will our schools communicate with students?

    We will continue to communicate through our website or through updates in school newsletters shared by principals at each site.  Teachers will be communicating daily via their regular modes of communication. Communication to students can be expected from a teacher or advisor by 9:30 or earlier each weekday.

    Teachers and staff will primarily communicate with students and sometimes families through the following approved methods:

    • Email
    • Schoology
    • Google Classroom
    • Seesaw
    • Remind

    How should I expect teachers to connect with families over the next several weeks?

    Over the next few days and weeks, teachers should be using technology to collaborate while practicing social distancing.  Becoming well versed in these tools would help you stay connected to school. These tools are the ones that may be most commonly used with you or your students.

    There are four primary Google tools that teachers will be using to connect with each other and perhaps with you:

    Shared Files and Google Docs - Teachers will be sharing documents in a variety of formats and many will be making shared folders with information for their classes.

    Google Calendar and Google Meet - These are great tools for connecting with each other and for setting times to meet with your teachers and for older students to set up collaboration with each other.

    Schoology, SeeSaw, and Google Classroom, and Remind will be the most commonly used tools for which teachers will communicate lessons and activities with students during our period of distance learning. 

    What should I expect for communication prior to April 6th?

    Since our students and Parents/Guardians are hoping to stay connected with school, we want to promote connection early and often.  There are resources on our website, but from March 27th through April 5th we will not be engaging in regular communication during our previously scheduled spring break.

    What should I expect for communication with students after April 5th?

    At this time, we are expecting that each classroom teacher will have daily contact with their students via Schoology, SeeSaw, Remind, or other apps that help with distance learning.  We expect elementary teachers to connect daily with their students. Each classroom teacher will provide daily language arts and math lessons consistent with our IB and Immersion lesson planning and culturally relevant pedagogy.

    Secondary teachers should have daily connections with students and provide culturally relevant assignments whether it be reading, writing, discussion, or assessments in their specific content areas 2-3 times per week.  Please know that these are our expectations for engaging students in instruction, but as things continue to change and evolve over time, our distance learning instruction may, as well.

    How long will we be engaged in Distance Learning?

    After our regularly scheduled Spring Break that ends on April 5, distance learning will commence on Monday, April 6 and last through Thursday, April 30. Staff will be asked to report on May 1 and May 4 to plan for the return of students on May 5. 

    Will we be taking attendance?

    Yes. Attendance will be taken once each day.  In grades K-12 attendance will be taken daily before noon.  This is subject to change if we receive guidance from the Minnesota Department of Education that requires us to use a different system for attendance. No attendance will be taken in our early childhood programs. 

    What can parents/families do to support student learning?

    While we are getting acquainted with new tools and a new schedule, familiarize yourself by helping your child access activities.  It is important that you work with your child to establish regular routines for learning and help set up a learning environment and encourage daily reading.  Consistency will help children of all ages be successful during this time. 

    Will my child be assessed in their learning at all through the month of April?

    Yes, depending on the standard being met. Students will be assessed virtually through a variety of authentic assessments that may include on-line activities, journals, written work, spoken-recorded assessments, photographed or submitted assignments, or virtual meetings.  

    How will our students with special needs be served?

    As required under Chapter 125A, students with disabilities will have assignments designed to meet the needs of Individual Education Plans (IEP’s) and 504 accommodation plans.

    • During Distance Learning, the classroom teacher will be the main resource on assignments and lessons.   If those lessons need to be modified, as reflected in the student’s IEP, the special education teacher will communicate with the general ed teacher.  If a child receives services outside the classroom and goes to another teacher for math, reading, or some other subject, then that teacher will design the online assignment for that subject area.
    • Students demonstrating difficulty with academic tasks will receive support through their general education teacher, special education teacher or paraprofessional through methods such as emails. telephone calls or video chat to assist students in completing material with the student either individually or in a small group.
    • Assignments will be posted electronically via SeeSaw, Schoology or Google Classroom.  Teachers will be available to answer questions via email throughout the day until 4:00pm.
    • Parents/Guardians of students in grades Early Childhood -grade 5 are encouraged to access SeeSaw, grades 6-12 Schoology or Google Classroom through the parent portal.
    • Parents/Guardians, along with teachers and students, are asked to remember that online learning days are designed to be flexible.  If additional time or assistance is required to complete an assignment, the parent or student should communicate with his/her teacher about how to complete the assignment.
    • Parents/Guardians should contact teachers or case managers directly with any questions which they may have regarding Distance Learning assignments.

    Will we provide mental health support?

    The School Social Workers and other mental health support staff will continue to connect with students and families on their caseloads providing support via telephone or video chat.  Should other students feel the need for such support, please email your School Social Worker.

    For those students receiving support via RELATE counseling, they too, will continue to support the students on their caseload via telephone or video chat.

    What are our plans for Early Childhood Services?

    Early Childhood Special Education Services Ages Birth to Three:

    • Staff is expected to follow district guidelines.
    • Services will be provided through alternate formats such as Google-Hangout or phone visits. 
    • An activity matrix with supporting materials shared with families. 
    • Video instruction and resources shared with families. 
    • Gather Progress Monitoring as it relates to Distance Learning.

    Early Childhood Services Ages Three to Five: 

    • Staff is expected to follow district guidelines. 
    • Provide adaptations and modifications to the Early Learning Activity Matrix. 
    • Provide home learning packets which connect to the Early Learning Activity Matrix. 
    • Collaborate with preschool teachers to support and ensure that accommodations are being provided. 
    • Provide an individual Routine Based Matrix and weekly parent/guardian support and coaching. 
    • Utilize learning avenues such as Videos and Google Hangout. 
    • Prepare live and video recorded lessons.
    • Gather Progress Monitoring as it relates to Distance Learning.

    How will our multilingual learners be served?

    By law, students who are identified to receive English language development services will be provided support that allow them access to academic content.

    • Licensed English Language (EL) Teachers and Paraprofessionals will support individual student needs and will continue collaboration with classroom teachers to modify lessons to support student learning needs to access grade level standards.
    • Communication with families that may not speak English as a primary language will be provided support through St. Louis Park Schools Multicultural Liaisons and have access to language line interpreting services to support buildings.

    What should I know about athletics?

    Below outlines the work High School athletics will focus on throughout the Distance Learning format.

    • Spring coaches are expected to check in with their team's participants and stay connected by providing updates, optional instructional fitness and sport specific tools that participants can do while practicing safe social distancing, and encouragement.
    • The MSHSL has suspended all spring activities until the Governor of Minnesota has lifted his school closure declaration. This includes, but is not limited to, competitions, trainings, practices, scrimmages and contests.
    • The SLPHS strength & conditioning program will be accessible to participants (high school and middle school) via the Team Buildr app. If you are having issues logging in please contact Coach Gust at gust.jessica@slpschools.org or on Instagram @slplift. Keep an eye on Instagram for fun challenges and updates.  
    • If the spring season is canceled, the District will issue full refunds for all registered students.

    Can my child access meals while on Distance Learning?

    Yes. Both lunch and breakfast is available for pickup at several locations throughout the district. Meals are available for all students under the age of 18, even if they do not attend St. Louis Park Public Schools. The district website has detailed information. Questions? Call the School Nutrition Department at 952-928-6146.

    Who should I contact with questions related to teaching and learning?

    Your primary contact is your teacher.  If there are specific questions that require adaptive solutions, please contact your principal.  If they are not able to help you, you can contact any of the following people:

    Patrick Duffy - Curriculum and Instruction | duffy.patrick@slpschools.org

    Freida Bailey - Equity, Access, and Multilingual Learning | bailey.freida@slpschools.org

    Silvy Lafayette - Testing and Assessments | lafayette.silvy@slpschools.org

    Tami Reynolds - Student Services and Special Education | reynolds.tami@slpschools.org

    Tom Marble - General Technology Support | marble.thomas@slpschools.org

    Angela Fransen - Secondary Schools Academic Technology Support | fransen.angela@slpschools.org

    Nathan Tangen - Elementary Schools Academic Technology Support | tangen.nathan@slpschools.org