08/11/2020- Barring any significant change in the prevalence of COVID-19 in the Upper Peninsula, Menominee Area Public School students will be back in the classroom this fall, with some notable changes in place. The Board of Education met Monday to review and approve the necessary preparedness plans for phases 1-3, 4, and 5 of Michigan’s Safe Start Plan. Currently, the entire U.P. is in stage 5, which means in-person instruction can resume with moderate safety protocols in place. Grant Chandler with Students Matter, LLC says it’s up to individual districts to determine what “moderate” measures are, and MAPS officials have settled on implementing all Phase 4 restrictions including the use of face masks by students and staff, increased cleaning and hygiene efforts, and minimizing close contact interactions. However, the district has made some exceptions in the MAPS Phase 5 instructional plan, which could allow the upcoming academic year at least resemble normalcy.

And while athletes should be gearing up for the fall season, there’s been a big question mark hovering over these events. Chandler says MAPS will continue to follow guidance from MHSAA, but their plan does set guidelines for these types of gatherings.

District parents have been asked to complete a survey indicating whether their student will return to school or if they’ll take advantage of online learning options. The MAPS 2020-2021 school year will kick off September 1st.