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ISD 318 Receives $150,000 Grant from the Blandin Foundation

On June 15, ISD 318 received a grant in the amount of $150,000 to purchase additional technology for students. The funds will be used to purchase additional 1:1 student devices and supporting technology.

“In planning for the coming school year, we want to ensure that our students will have access to their teachers and support staff via iPads and hotspots if necessary,” said Teaching and Learning Director Sue Akre. “During the past school year’s distance learning period the iPads were our best way to connect with students. Beyond learning, the devices provided access to mental health supports and engagementwith teachers and staff.”

“We do not yet know what the coming year will look like,” said incoming Superintendent Matt Grose. “But we are planning for the future and will be ready to educate our kids regardless of the model.” The Minnesota Department of Education (MDE) has outlined three possible scenarios for the coming school year - in-person learning for all students, hybrid learning with strict social distancing and capacity limits, and distance learning only. “We are creating plans to meet the needs of students and staff in each of the three models,” said Grose.

“Regardless of what the coming year looks like, we are so excited to be able to improve the technology our students have access to with the support of the Blandin Foundation,” said Akre.

MDE released guidelines to Minnesota districts to aid in planning the three scenarios on June 18. In a statement to the press, MDE said “This situation is fluid and decisions will continue to be reviewed in the best interest of public health, and specifically the health and safety of our school communities. As the situation evolves, decisions may change. That is why we are urging all school districts and charter schools to prepare for each of the three scenarios.” The announcement of which model of educational delivery will be implemented is expected to take place the week of July 27, 2020. ISD 318 will be meeting with district administration and teacher representatives to continue planning for the coming year throughout the summer.

Additional information about the scenarios is available on the MDE website at education.mn.gov.