With more than four weeks of Distance learning behind us, we are so proud of our students, families and staff and for so many reasons. Students are adapting to new challenges every day, whether engaging in distance learning and/or figuring creative ways to remain positive and safe amidst a pandemic. The family commitment to support students, while balancing jobs and family life, is second to none. We are so proud of our remarkable staff for turning their vibrant classes into engaging content delivered via screens at home. Everyone is rising to this challenge in nimble MTCS style, even if it is not the way we planned to finish the 2019 – 2020 school year..
As you may know, MTCS is a K-12 Academic Community with Minnesota Virtual Schools as one of our online programs. MNVS is pioneering online programs in Minnesota, graduating students for sixteen years. It is a completely Minnesota local program with all its teachers and staff right here in the state, creating their own student centered curriculum while forging strong relationships. With MNVS expertise in delivering remarkable online education, MNVS staff were quick to step in and support staff at our in-school programs with best practices, tips and tricks. Because of this, and e-learning days this past year, the transition to distance learning was done in an innovative and efficient manner.
As you know, there are more variables than we can imagine impacting students and families. Grades, challenges with attendance, assignments being turned in on-time, and students being 100% engaged with distance learning are not the primary concern at this time. Important? Yes, but not primary. What is primary: safety, love, kindness, feeling connected to others, equity, mental health, getting enough to eat, having a home, care for loved ones, hearing the voices of our students and our students knowing they are and will continue to be heard, loved, valued, and feeling connected to you….these are our primary concerns.
Families have the support of Governor Walz, Minnesota Department of Education, myself, directors, and all staff at MTCS. Equity, safety, and relationships are all clearly a focus of MDE and others throughout Minnesota. Grades and all are being discussed in a manner that errs on the side of benefiting students and minimizing the potential for a negative, lasting impact. As more information and/or guidance becomes available we will share it with you and do our best to keep you informed, supported, and cared for.
Also know that our decisions continue to be rooted in what is best for our students and erring on the side of benefit for students and families. Love and kindness will do no harm. Love and kindness is what we all need, now, more so than ever.
There are many questions about completing the school year, graduation and preparing for next year. We will be in touch with answers as we move forward to safely, respectfully, equitably, and efficiently get plans in place.
As overwhelming as it all may be, I remain confident in our collective and collaborative efforts. I believe that we are and will continue to do our best, at this very moment, one day at a time. Thank you for the love and kindness you are showing each other. Remember to treat yourself with love and kindness. You deserve it.
Be safe, take care, thank you, and feel free to reach out to MTCS anytime, for any reason.