News

News articles are published by the Communications Department. Story ideas, comments or questions can be sent to info@sowashco.org


Grades 6-12 Scheduled to Return to the In-person Learning Model on March 18
02/25/2021
Based on new guidance from the Minnesota Department of Education (MDE), we are happy to share that students in grades 6-12 currently in the hybrid learning model, will return to in-person learning beginning Thursday, March 18. Students who are in the Virtual Learning Academy (VLA) for trimester three will remain in VLA.
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Practicing Patience During COVID-19
02/25/2021
As we approach a full year of the pandemic, there is a range of emotions that students, staff and families are feeling. I want to acknowledge that families have made many sacrifices to balance work and finances along with supporting their child’s education at home. Finding a balance in life also applies to our teachers, nutrition services workers, bus drivers, custodians and the entire staff who have been keeping our school district running.
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East Ridge High School Student Selected as 2021 ExCEL Award Winner
02/25/2021
South Washington County Schools (SoWashCo) is pleased to announce that Riya Bharti from East Ridge High School, has been selected as a 2021 Minnesota State High School League (MSHSL) ExCEL Award winner. ExCEL (Excellence in Community, Education and Leadership) is a unique recognition program designed exclusively for Minnesota high school juniors who are active in school activities, show leadership qualities, volunteer in their communities and are model citizens.
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Three SoWashCo Educators Nominated for the Minnesota Teacher of the Year
02/19/2021
Three South Washington County Schools (SoWashCo) teachers are nominated for the 2021 Minnesota Teacher of the Year. The winner will be selected from a field of 75 candidates.
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Share Your Stories: How My Cultural Identity Is Seen, Heard and Honored
02/16/2021
The virtual listening session, scheduled for 1:30-2:30 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 18, will be facilitated by Superintendent Julie Nielsen, Assistant Principal Ashley Ruka and Literacy Coordinator Leah Bulous, and will focus on cultural identity. The listening session is open for students in grades 6-12.
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Bus Reminders and a Return to School for Grades 6-8 and 11-1
02/15/2021
Due to the continued cold weather this week, please ensure that your child is dressed warmly when waiting outside for the school bus. Tomorrow, Feb. 16, we will welcome back grades 6-8 and 11-12 to the hybrid learning model.
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New Meal Pick-up Schedule For February and March
02/11/2021
To accommodate students shifting learning models, there is a new meal pick-up calendar for February and March. The new calendar will start the week of Feb. 15.
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Virtual Learning Interest Survey
02/11/2021
South Washington County Schools (SoWashCo) is conducting an informational survey about the interest in a full-time distance learning program next school year.
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2021 Dell Scholarship Semifinalists
02/11/2021
Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID) at Park High School is pleased to announce that Lan Mai and Mia Judkins have been selected as semifinalists for the Dell Scholars program. The Dell Scholars program focuses on providing support for students as they pursue a higher education degree.
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Review Secondary (Grades 6-12) School Bus Information
02/11/2021
Secondary school bus transportation will resume with its original routes and bus stops that were in place before distance learning. It’s important to double check your child’s school bus information as it may have changed.
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No Meal Pick-up at Woodbury High School on Thursday, Feb. 4 and Thursday, Feb. 11
02/01/2021
Due to a staffing shortage, there will be no meal pick-up on Thursday, Feb. 4 and Thursday, Feb. 11 at Woodbury High School. Meal pick-up will still be available on Friday, Feb. 5 and Friday, Feb. 12 at Park High School and East Ridge High School.
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REVISED PLAN: All Middle School Students to Return in Hybrid Learning Model on Feb. 16
01/28/2021
All middle school students (6-8) currently in distance learning for trimester two will return to school in a hybrid learning model starting Tuesday, Feb. 16.
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Grades 9-12 Scheduled to Return to the Hybrid Learning Model
01/28/2021
Students in grades 11-12 currently in distance learning for trimester two, will return to school in the hybrid learning model beginning Tuesday, Feb. 16. Grades 9-10 will return to the hybrid learning model on Monday, March 1.
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High School Standouts Nominated for 2021 Triple "A" Award
01/27/2021
East Ridge, Park and Woodbury High Schools announced the selection of the female and male nominees for the Minnesota State High School League’s (MSHSL) Triple “A” Award. The award recognizes high school seniors for academics, arts and athletics. Recipients must have a B or higher grade point average and participate in MSHSL sponsored athletics and fine arts activities.
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Registration Opens for Families Changing Learning Models for Trimester Three
01/25/2021
South Washington County Schools has opened its online registration for families who wish to change learning models for trimester three. The trimester runs from March 16 to the end of the school year. The deadline is 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 7.
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School Board Action Update
01/22/2021
During its regularly scheduled business meeting on Thursday, Jan. 21, the School Board approved several items from a three-year budget adjustment plan that included a combination of cuts and enhancements (increases in revenue).
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Daily Schedule Adjustments to Several Middle School Learning Models
01/20/2021
As we prepare for the return of sixth grade students on Tuesday, Feb. 16, we want to share how a typical school day will look for students. In addition, we have made some changes to other middle school daily schedules to accommodate the work of teachers who divide their time between in-person instruction and the Virtual Learning Academy (VLA).
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New Meal Pick-up Calendar For January-March
01/15/2021
To accommodate elementary students transitioning to in-person learning, there is a new schedule for meal pick-up for January, February and March.
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Winter Sport Spectator Guidelines
01/14/2021
As winter athletic competitions begin, families should review the spectator guidelines for their child’s sport. The guidelines are in accordance with COVID-19 policies established by the Minnesota Department of Health, Minnesota State High School League and the Suburban East Conference (SEC). If spectators do not follow guidelines for their sporting event, they will be asked to leave.
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Share Your Stories Student Voice Listening Session on Jan. 21
01/14/2021
Student voice is a valuable part of our classrooms, schools and community. SoWashCo is seeking input from all secondary students (6-12) in our second Share Your Stories listening session.
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Apply to be a Licensed Substitute Teacher
01/13/2021
Substitute teachers are critical for an in-person learning model. The Professional Educator License and Standards Board (PELSB) offers a short call substitute teaching license that allows a candidate to substitute teach for up to 15 consecutive days per-assignment.
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Community Information Sessions Scheduled for the Budget Adjustment Process
01/08/2021
For school districts, the new year is often met with a new challenge – determining the budget for the next school year. South Washington County Schools (SoWashCo) is in the middle of a budget adjustment process to create a sustainable budget while prioritizing student learning. Thursday evening, the school board reviewed a list of proposed budget adjustments that will impact elementary, middle and high schools, in addition to district wide programs and staff.
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East Ridge High School Student Selected As Coca-Cola Scholarship Semifinalist
01/08/2021
Congratulations to Allison Benjamin who was selected as a semifinalist in the 2020-2021 Coca-Cola Scholars Program. The Coca-Cola Scholars Program awards students who display leadership skills, excel academically and show a passion for bettering their community.
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SoWashCo Parent ADHD Education Event on Jan. 27
01/08/2021
South Washington County Schools (SoWashCo) will be hosting One of Those Kids, a virtual parent education event from 6:30-7:30 p.m. on Jan. 27 as a part of the parent education series on ADHD provided by a PrarieCare Child and Family fund grant.
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Review Elementary School Bus Information Beginning Jan. 14
01/08/2021
Elementary school bus transportation will resume with its original routes and bus stops that were in place before distance learning. It is important to double check your child’s school bus information, as it may have changed.
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Six SoWashCo Juniors Nominated for 2021 ExCEL Awards
01/07/2021
Six South Washington County Schools students have been nominated for the Minnesota State High School League’s (MSHSL) ExCEL Awards. ExCEL (Excellence in Community, Education and Leadership) is a unique recognition program designed exclusively for Minnesota high school juniors who are active in school activities, show leadership qualities, volunteer in their communities and are model citizens.
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Zoom now Available to SoWashCo Staff and Teachers
01/03/2021
South Washington County Schools (SoWashCo) teachers and staff will now be able to use Zoom for video conferencing with students.
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In-person Learning for K-2 Begins Jan. 19, Grades 3-5 Two Weeks Later
12/22/2020
South Washington County Schools (SoWashCo) is planning to bring our youngest students back to school for regular in-person learning in January. Elementary students in kindergarten through grade two will return to in-person learning on Tuesday, Jan. 19.
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Help Your School By Completing an Educational Benefits Form
12/18/2020
You can help your school by completing the Application for Educational Benefits (Free and Reduced Price Meals Application) online or by printing it and returning it to your school by Jan. 4, 2021. Only one application is needed per household. Families who qualify will receive free or reduced price meals, field trips, equipment rentals and more.
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School Board Meetings Transition to Traditional Format
12/17/2020
Beginning, Feb. 4, 2021, the South Washington County Schools (SoWashCo) School Board will move to a more traditional meeting format with a monthly school board workshop and a monthly school board business meeting.
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Family Technology Phone Line will be Closed for Winter Break
12/17/2020
The family technology support phone line will be closed for live calls beginning at 4 p.m. on Dec. 22 until 7:30 a.m. on Jan. 4 Families will be able to leave a voicemail message. Messages will be addressed in the order they are received when support returns on Jan. 4.
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Expanded Meal Pick-up Hours
12/16/2020
https://www.sowashco.org/cms/One.aspx?portalId=1217437&pageId=28128585
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SoWashCo Response to the Governor’s Announcement
12/16/2020
South Washington County Schools (SoWashCo) is reviewing the announcement from Gov. Tim Walz today, that prioritizes the return to school for elementary students in January. School districts do not receive advance notice of these announcements and will spend the next few days reviewing the guidance. Our goal is to provide an update for all grades before, or perhaps during, winter break.
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New Meal Pick-up Calendar For December and January
12/03/2020
To accommodate families in the distance learning model, there is a new schedule for meal pick-up in December and January. All SoWashCo families can pick-up ten meals (five meals each for breakfast and lunch) for their child at any of the sites listed on the calendar. Please only visit one site each week.
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School Board Passes Racial Equity Resolution
12/03/2020
During the school board meeting on Thursday, Nov. 19, the board unanimously approved a racial equity resolution. The school board recognizes the need to take decisive action to provide each student with a welcoming and inclusive school environment that will directly contribute to learning and success.
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Let’s Talk About Mental Health Student Video
12/03/2020
Students in South Washington County Schools (SoWashCo) want to normalize talking about mental health and getting support. These young advocates are working to start conversations and end the stigma of asking for help. To get this message to peers, students created a video called "Let's Talk" that will be shared and discussed in classrooms.
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A Time for Reflection as We Shift to Distance Learning
11/23/2020
Superintendent Julie Nielsen shares a message about prioritizing social-emotional health as we transition into distance learning.
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Elementary (K-5) Distance Learning Schedule Begins Nov. 30
11/23/2020
Beginning Monday, Nov. 30, all elementary students in grades K-5 in the hybrid learning model will shift to distance learning. Elementary students in the Virtual Learning Academy (VLA) will remain in their class with their current teacher.
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SoWashCo Pauses All In-person Sports and Activities
11/19/2020
SoWashCo is pausing all in-person sports and activities in accordance with Gov. Tim Walz new executive order beginning at 11:59 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 20 through Friday, Dec. 18.
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UPDATE: Elementary Grades (PreK-5) Must Now Shift to Distance Learning Nov. 30
11/17/2020
Due to a surge in staff absences in key areas like transportation, nutrition services and teaching, all elementary schools must shift to distance learning beginning Nov. 30.
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Distance Learning for Grades 6-12 Set for Nov. 16, Elementary Families Urged to Prepare
11/06/2020
After receiving input and reviewing the data, Superintendent Julie Nielsen will continue with the plan to shift grades 6-12 to distance learning on Nov. 16. Due to the increased community spread of COVID-19 and staffing shortages, the team is urging elementary families and staff to prepare for the potential of moving to distance learning.
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Distance Learning Schedules for all 6-12 Grade Students Begin Nov. 16
11/03/2020
Beginning Monday, Nov. 16, all secondary students in grades 6-12 in the current hybrid learning model and in the Virtual Learning Academy will shift to distance learning under one schedule.
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Grades 6-12 to Shift to Distance Learning Nov. 16, Elementary Schools Remain in Hybrid
10/30/2020
Washington County, like many areas of the state, is seeing a dramatic increase in COVID-19 cases. The SoWashCo Incident Command Team met on Friday, Oct. 30 to review the latest data related to COVID-19 in our community.
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A Message About Safely Keeping our Schools Open
10/22/2020
Washington County is seeing a rise in COVID-19 cases. Even so, the number of positive cases in our schools and programs continue to be low. Staff, students and families play an important role in helping our schools stay open as long and as safely as possible.
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SoWashCo CARES Winter Clothing Drive
10/09/2020
To help keep children warm this winter, South Washington County Schools Community Education is partnering with SoWashCo CARES (Community Action Reaching Every Student) to help match students in need with new winter coats, snow pants, boots, hats and gloves.
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2020-21 Calendar Updates
10/09/2020
During the Oct. 8 school board meeting, members approved adjustments to the 2020-21 school and district calendar. The changes will provide more consistency for instructional days for all grade levels.
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Excused Absences Related to COVID-19
09/24/2020
School attendance, whether in person or virtually, has a high impact on a student’s academic success. If a student is not sick, they are generally expected to continue their schoolwork remotely. We also recognize that some absences are unavoidable during the COVID-19 pandemic.
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All Students to Receive Breakfast and Lunch at No Cost
09/10/2020
The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has approved South Washington County Schools (SoWashCo) to provide free breakfast and lunch for enrolled students starting on Monday, Sept. 14.
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South Washington County Schools Family Technology Support Phone Line 651-425-HELP (4357) is Now Available
09/03/2020
South Washington County Schools (SoWashCo) has started a new family technology support phone line at 651-425-HELP (4357). Standard phone line hours are Monday through Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.
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A Message About Health and Safety From Incoming Superintendent Julie Nielsen
08/25/2020
Join incoming Superintendent Julie Nielsen for a tour of some of the changes that students, staff and families will see for the new school year.
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Free and Reduced-Priced Meals Application Information
08/10/2020
Families must submit a new application for free and reduced-priced meals each year. The application can be completed online or by submitting a printed form.
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