Twin Ports Back to School COVID Update

TWIN PORTS- It has been a couple of weeks since students returned to the classroom, and schools across the Northland are continuing their efforts to battle COVID within campuses.

School faculty members enjoy seeing campuses full of students again.

After an increased number of positive COVID cases moved kindergarten through 3rd-grade classes at a Chisholm elementary school to distanced learning for the next two weeks, surrounding school districts are keeping a close eye on their safety protocols.

“Some of the differences from maybe a normal year is like our entire cafeteria has a very complex seating chart so we can keep track of who was sitting next to who if we have to contact trace,” said Raleigh Edison Charter Director Steve Ondrus.

Most school districts are practicing social distancing and are requiring masks on school campuses. However, since being back, a few school districts have been experiencing a rise in COVID cases for staff and students.

“Part of the reason we went with mask-wearing was to make sure we could stay in person as long and as much as possible,” said Duluth Public Schools Superintendent John Magas. “So by having that as one of our most important mitigation layers, that is something that’s really critical.”

Officials say both Superior and Duluth school districts have at least a dozen known COVID cases each.

The Duluth school district requires masks for all ages, both staff and students. Meanwhile, the Superior School District only requires masks for elementary school staff and students.

“As normal, our students do a fantastic job following those requests, and our staff are making sure our kids are staying safe,” said Superior School District Superintendent Amy Starzecki. “We are continuing to follow our protocol.”

Vaccinations are not required for students but are encouraged for eligible age groups. The Superior School District even has vaccination clinics set up at select schools.

Schools will continue practicing safe COVID protocols as case numbers continue to rise in educational institutions.

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