SARTELL -- With less than two weeks left in the current school year, things remain status quo in the Sartell-St. Stephen School District.

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Superintendent Jeff Schwiebert says despite the governor lifting the statewide mask mandate, students will continue to wear masks through the end of the school year per the Minnesota Department of Education's Safe Learning Plan.

Schwiebert says the biggest question they have now is what do the latest rollbacks mean for students attending summer school.

The governor made it very clear our Safe Learning Plan remains in effect until the last contract day with our teachers. Our teacher's contracts end June 4th and June 7th is when we start summer school. So we are hoping the state will give us some more guidance on summer school.

The CDC recently announced kids ages 12-15 are now eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine, however Schwiebert says some students attending summer school are either not eligible or haven't had the opportunity to get vaccinated.

He says they are also continuing to work on their equity audit. Earlier this month, the board heard from a group of volunteers who have been developing what an Education Equity Committee would look like.

Schwiebert says while there will be some challenges, it's about working together to better help shape the future needs of their students.

Change is something we don't do well and we are trying to work through that. We have people pushing from both directions saying we want to make sure every voice is heard, but at the same point we need to be fair with how we treat every voice as that message comes back in.

Schwiebert says the school board will be getting the report from Equity Alliance MN on the district's equity audit at their June 21st meeting.

From there the board will decide what actions to take, including how the Education Equity Committee would operate.


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