The District 287 School Board approved the base learning plan for the 2020-2021 school year on August 13, 2020.

Start School with Connected Learning: Students will start school on September 8 with Connected Learning (learning from home). Any student can remain in Connected Learning and opt-out of in-person learning.

Hybrid Learning: We will continually review our return-to-school metrics. If they indicate it is safe to do so, staff and families will receive notice two weeks before increasing a step.

Itinerant Services & Care and Treatment Programs: Students who receive Itinerant services through 287 will follow the learning model of their home school district, and students who receive educational services through 287 Care & Treatment programs will follow a learning model decided on collaboratively by partners and 287.

2020-2021 Back to School Plan

Summary of Back to School Plan

Here are the basics of 287's 2020-2021 learning plan:

  • The plan has four steps (0, 1, 2, and 3)
  • We will move up or down the steps depending on the nature of the pandemic and the safety of in-person schooling.
    • Step 0: All 287 students will start with Connected Learning.  All families have the choice to keep their child at home no matter the step.
    • Step1: We will consider moving to step 1 beginning September 28.  Step 1 will serve K-5, grade 12 & those within 7 credits of graduation, & students in their last year of Transition.
    • Step 2: In step 2, we will serve students in step 1, students in grades 6-8, students in grade 11 &/or students within 14 credits of graduation, & all other students in Transition.
    • Step 3: In step 3, we will serve all students, including those in grades 9 & 10, & those with greater than 14 credits remaining.
  • In steps 1-3, students will attend school 2 days per week (M/T or W/Th) and have Connected Learning on all other days. Friday is Connected Learning for all students while buildings are deep cleaned.
  • COVID-19 cases in Hennepin County, lessons learned in previous steps, and staff, family, and member district input will inform change in steps.

When/how will 287 decide to increase steps?

The Minnesota Department of Education provided direction to school districts on returning vulnerable students as soon as safely possible. We believe that a short timeline for bringing back students, as well as adding additional students to each step (while keeping within the original capacity), will still allow us to successfully evaluate our metrics for returning, including what has worked and what has not in our District and across the metro.

Every step of the way, we consulted with the Minnesota Department of Health officials and engaged the  287’s planning committee to ensure we, as a collective, can stand behind this plan.

Who/how many students will return in each step? 

Each step keeps us within the original daily capacity we expected to serve: 10% in step 1, 25% in step 2, and 50% in step 3, accounting for families who choose to stay in Connecting (distance) Learning (about 20% - note that 15% are undecided so that number could be higher).

  • Step 1 (10% daily capacity for students) K-5, grade 12 & those within 7 credits of graduation, & students in their last year of Transition. Estimated Daily Number of Students in School - ABEC: 20-30, NEC:  25-35, SEC: 20-30, WEC: 20-30. 
  • Step 2 (20% daily capacity for students) Students in step 1, students in grades 6-8, students in grade 11 &/or students within 14 credits of graduation, & all other students in Transition. Estimated Daily Number of Students in School: ABEC: 40-50, NEC: 75-85, SEC: 50-60, WEC: 20-30.
  • Step 3 (50% daily capacity for students) All students, including those in grades 9 & 10, & those with greater than 14 credits remaining. Estimated Daily Number of Students in School: ABEC: 55-66, NEC: 95-105, SEC: 70-80, WEC: 66-75

Weekly Review

The Incident Command team will review our return to school metrics weekly with the potential of moving up steps each week. Member districts, staff, and families will be given a two-week notice before increasing a step. These metrics include:

  • COVID-19 Cases in Hennepin County and by city
  • Member District Input
  • Factors and Lessons Learned Related to Keeping Students and Staff Safe (may include surveys)
  • Additional guidance from the Governor, MDE, MDH, and the CDC









Case Parameters

The most recent 14-day trend data can be found on the Hennepin County COVID-19 dashboard. The below numbers represent cases per 10,000 people in Hennepin County.

  • September 15-September 28: 22.1
  • September 8-September 21: 18.9
  • September 1 - September 14: 14.5
  • August 25 - September 7: 15.1
  • August 18 - August 31: 18.4
  • August 11 - August 24: 19.4
  • August 4 - August 17: 19.7
  • July 28 - August 10: 21.2
  • July 21 - August 3: 23.5
  • July 14 - 27: 23.9

The Minnesota Department of Education and the Minnesota Department of Health parameters to return to school are below. 

Important Information For Families

Confirmed COVID-19 Cases

Confirmed Cases of COVID-19

October 2020

  • Ann Bremer Education Center: 0
  • District Service Center: 1 (10/19)
  • North Education Center: 0
  • South Education Center: 2 (10/4) (10/8)
  • West Education Center: 0
  • Hennepin Technical College Programs: 1 (10/14)

Site information will be updated as cases are confirmed.

Inform 287

Let us know if you test positive for COVID-19: First, staff members and families must follow the instructions for notifying District 287 if they have received a confirmed positive case of COIVD-19. 


Staff: Staff members should contact their supervisor to help them submit a positive case form, which is shared with Human Resources.

Families: Families should contact the school nurse at their student's school to report a positive case.

The positive case will be reported to 287's COVID-19 Program Coordinator/Health & Safety Manager, who will notify the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) and Superintendent of District 287.

In collaboration with District 287, the MHD will identify people who were in close contact with the confirmed case. Close contacts will receive an email from District 287, letting them know they should not enter a 287 building for the duration of the incubation period (14 days from the date of potential exposure).


Communicating with staff and families: District 287 chooses to communicate to staff and families if there is a confirmed positive case of COVID-19 on your site. You will be notified the same day that District 287 receives the information from the Minnesota Department of Health.

Close Contacts: Close Contacts: Anyone who was in close contact, within 6 feet for 15 mins or more, with the confirmed case 48 hours prior to testing positive will receive an email.

School-wide notice: Staff and families will receive a school-wide notification each time there is a positive COVID-19 case. Staff will receive an email. Families will receive an email, phone recording, and text message (if you've signed up for it).

Public website: This page will be updated each week with any confirmed cases

Next Steps: Additional cleaning and disinfecting will happen at the site. In collaboration with MDH and other district leaders, the Superintendent will determine if a zonal, site or district-wide closure needs to occur.

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Past Family Communications
COVID-19 Planning Teams

Fall School Planning: A team of 287 staff meets weekly to plan and prepare for what school may look like in the fall. This team of diverse staff includes nurses, social workers, family engagement, food and nutrition, transportation, academics, staff professional development, district leaders, racial equity, and more. Members of the team are gathering input from staff, students, and families to understand concerns about planning for school this fall.

Incident Command: A team of district leaders and principals meet 3 to 5 times each week to plan and prepare for the day-to-day operations as a result of COVID-19. The team includes staff experts in health and safety, mental health, academics and learning, special education, human resources, communications, and more.

Nothing in our COVID-19-related policies, plans, and procedures should be read to create a ministerial duty; the District relies upon the sound judgment and discretion of its administrators to carry out the recommendations of the CDC and the Minnesota Department of Health.