Perpich News

A note from Conn McCartan, Perpich Arts High School Principal – November 6, 2020

November 6, 2020

Perpich Community,

Perpich Arts High School will be shifting our learning model to all distance learning starting on Monday, November 9th. No classes will be held on Thursday, November 12th and Friday, November 13th. These days are to prepare for the full distance learning transition and to provide time for students to pick up any supplies they need for classes over the next few weeks, or get items they want out of dorm rooms. More detailed information will be shared in the coming days, but in preparation of pick up, here are a few important details:

We are asking that our families make arrangements to pick up student supplies on Friday, November 13th. The school will be open between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m.

We have limited availability on Saturday, November 14th and ask that it be reserved for our resident student families who are further away and have longer commutes.

*If at all possible, please arrange pickups on Friday, November 13th.*

Dorm students: We are requesting that you sign up here to pick up anything you feel you may need from your dorm room. Please note: this is not a move out schedule, this is designated for picking up items only. If you know you are not planning on returning to the dorm for the remainder of the 20/21 school year, please connect with Kelsey Kava, Resident Director, to make arrangements to move out.

As you will recall, we receive information from the MN Department of Health (MDH) on county infection rates across Minnesota. While our students come from 34 counties in Minnesota, and we look at all that data, MDH has encouraged us to use Hennepin County as our guide in making any decisions about changing learning models. This is because our school is located in Hennepin County and 44% of our students reside in Hennepin County. Today we learned that Hennepin County exceeds the case rate threshold of 30 per 10,000 COVID-19 cases. Additionally, 90% of counties where our students reside exceeded this threshold. This past week over 10% of students who are part of the on campus group did not attend due to a close contact with COVID-19 cases and we have seen our first few confirmed cases in our school community.

The data compels us to make this change, but it doesn’t make the disappointment go away. The Perpich community has worked hard to make hybrid learning safe and successful by exercising thoughtful decision-making and open communication. We remain committed to meeting both the educational and social-emotional needs of our students in distance learning and share a common goal of returning to our hybrid model as soon as possible.

As our students have been participating in distance learning during the weeks between when they are on campus, nothing changes for our classes. We still expect students to check in at the start of each class, each day. The specifics of any given lesson plan will determine how much time a student has to be online in class on any given day, but none of our plans call for students to be online all day! We continue to encourage students to take breaks from their screens when their class isn’t holding an online session. We encourage students to get up and move around throughout the day. We will be providing resources and programming to support our students’ mental health and to maintain community connections as we make this move to distance learning. Look for details on those resources and programs in a separate communication.

Our plans for returning to our hybrid model will be the same as our plans were for going to distance learning. We will track the case rate data in all counties, but particularly Hennepin County. When that case rate falls below 30 for a few weeks in a row and the trend suggests it will stay there, we will re-establish our hybrid rotation, starting with Group B.

We will hold a Google Meet session next Tuesday, November 10th at 6:00 p.m. to discuss this shift to distance learning and answer your questions. I will send out a reminder to families next week. In the meantime, stay safe, stay healthy, stay strong!

Conn McCartan
Principal | Perpich Arts High School