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Updated Guidance from District Administration to Teachers and Staff

March 16, 2020

RE: Updated Guidance from District Administration Regarding Remote Work during School Closure, March 18 through March 27

St. Louis Park Teachers & Staff:

In an email earlier today, District Administration provided guidance to teachers and staff stating that March 18 through March 27, 2020 they would be required to report to work.

Shortly after the District Administration announced this decision, the President announced new guidance suggesting that events with 10 people or more should be cancelled or postponed for the next eight weeks or more. Additionally, late this afternoon, Governor Walz issued a new Executive Order closing bars and restaurants (not take-out) starting 5 p.m. Tuesday.

Tonight, I am writing to share NEW GUIDANCE for the school closures March 17 through 27, 2020:

All teachers and staff should report to their school as usual on March 17, 2020. 

NEW GUIDANCE:  Beginning Wednesday, March 18, 2020:

  • TEACHERS will be expected to connect with students and work on their Distance Learning Plans as part of Emergency Executive Order 20-02. In most cases, we anticipate that this work can be performed from home.
  • SPARK paraprofessionals will report to work to support childcare that the district has been asked by the Governor to provide for Emergency Workers as part of Emergency Executive Order 20-02.  Work with your supervisor to determine other work and training that you can participate in from home.
  • CE EDUCATORS will report to work to support childcare that the district has been asked by the Governor to provide for Emergency Workers as part of Emergency Executive Order 20-02.  Work with your supervisor to determine other work and training that you can participate in from home.
  • CUSTODIANS will report to work and perform cleaning duties as directed.
  • SCHOOL NUTRITION STAFF will report to work to provide lunches to families as directed by Governor Walz as part of Emergency Executive Order 20-02.
  • OFFICE STAFF (CAPS, managers/supervisors, professional/technical, operation supervisors, directors) should work with their supervisor to determine whether their work can be performed from home.

The following areas provide additional guidance to be used during the closures:

Sick Leave:

  • If you are not sick you should come to work on March 17. March 18 through March 27 are workdays. See your supervisor for your responsibilities starting March 18. 
  • If you are sick, you should stay home and report your absence in Skyward – Sick Day: Employee or Dependent Child.
  • If you are working from home and are unable to perform your duties because you are sick, you should report your absence in Skyward - Sick Day: Employee or Dependent Child.
  • If your child is sick, you can stay home and care for your dependent child and report your absence in skyward – Sick Day: Employee or Dependent Child
  • If you are working from home and are unable to perform your duties because your child is sick, you should report your absence in Skyward:  Employee or Dependent Child.
  • If you are not currently sick, but have a known underlying health condition, then you can use your available leave.  Report this time off as – Sick Day: Employee or Dependent Child. You may also discuss a possible work from home accommodation if you are working in a position where this is an option during this emergency situation. Check with your supervisor, it could be possible for you to participate in collaborative planning events at your school or department. 
  • If you end up having a confirmed case of COVID-19 or have been quarantined due to a confirmed case of COVID-19, you can contact Human Resources when you are ready to return. You will need a note from your medical provider that you are well and able to return to work. HR will credit your sick leave back in Skyward upon verification that the absence was related to a confirmed case of COVID-19.

 Vacation or Personal Days:

  • Vacation or Personal days will continue to be requested and used as per each employee’s employment agreement.

Childcare for Teachers & Staff:

  • Beginning tomorrow, March 17, District teachers and staff may access FREE “Emergency Childcare” for their children. 
    • Tomorrow (Tuesday, March 17) the hours will be 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.; the remainder of the days, the hours will be 6:30 a.m.-6:00 p.m.
  • Where should I bring my child/children for “Emergency Childcare”?  If your child is currently a Kids Place participant, continue to bring them to their current site/classroom. If your child is not currently a Kids Place participant, bring them to:
    • Your child is K-5 and you work in an elementary school: bring child to the elementary school where you work
    • Your child is a preschooler (ages 33 months to 5 years):  bring child to Central Community Center
    • Your child is in grades 6-7 (children ages 12 and under) - Park Spanish Immersion Elementary School
  • Extended day before school care hours are 6:30 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. and Extended day after school care hours are 4:30 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. - Both cost $12/day
  • If, because of school closings, you do not have childcare, you can bring your 33-month to age-12 child to the SLP-provided childcare during this emergency period (we cannot serve infants and toddlers less than 33 months).
  • If you have an infant or toddler and do not have childcare during this time, contact your supervisor or Human Resources about available leave.
  • PLEASE NOTE: You cannot bring your children to your classroom or workplace while you are working, all children need to be enrolled in the emergency childcare program.

Payroll Information

District administration has made arrangements for the seamless continuation of payroll during the spread of COVID-19. All employees are scheduled to be paid per the payroll calendar.

Curriculum & Instruction Information

We are greatly appreciative of the work you are doing to collaborate and provide resources to students to ensure that all of the children we serve will not have an extended interruption to learning during the March 18 through March 27 closure. 

Here are a few important expectations for the next two weeks. 

  • Staff should prepare lessons, activities, or messaging for regular connection with students. Plan on providing 2-3 assignments a week.
  • Collaborative teams (grade levels or departments) should collaborate to ensure common lessons and experiences for kids across the school at that grade level and course.
  • All educators should be working with special education case managers, gifted and talented teachers, and multilingual learners teachers to adapt and differentiate grade level standards and curriculum.
  • Be intentional about creating lessons that are both racially conscious and culturally relevant in nature - our mission and vision for equity is designed to keep our children first through this unprecedented time.
  • Student services staff like counselors, social workers, and TOSAs should be connecting with students that may need extensive support through email and phone on a regular basis. Student service and support staff may have other duties as assigned.

Purposeful collaboration is important by school, but also important across the district. It is confusing to our families and students if siblings and neighbors in our schools (both the same school and different schools) are getting mixed messages or completely different expectations from educators across the system.