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Effective Thursday, Nov. 19, Le Sueur-Henderson will be transitioning to a distance learning model for all students.

When elementary school students came home today, it was with as much of their learning supplies as possible. LS-H elementary school students will not have school from Monday, Nov. 16 through Wednesday, Nov. 18 as school staff will be using that time for planning purposes. All students will remain in distance learning through at least Friday, Jan. 15.

The school district made this decision after discussion with county health officials and taking into account the rapidly rising cases in Sibley and Le Sueur counties.

Between Nov. 2-9, Sibley County added 66 new cases while Le Sueur County added 134. By comparison, during the week of Oct. 5-12, Sibley County added 10 new cases and Le Sueur County added 51.

“This decision was not made lightly. We analyzed county, community and district numbers to determine the need for changing the learning model,” the district said in a statement released today. “Our threshold numbers are predicted to climb steeply.”

Fall sports have also been cancelled.

According to Athletics and Activities Director Jeff Christ, football has been cancelled immediately due to COVID-19 concerns, which includes tonight’s game against GFW.

The Giants volleyball team will be playing their game against Norwood-Young America tonight and the home game against Belle Plaine on Friday. However, that will wrap up their season as the cancellation will take place Monday, Nov. 16.

Winter activities have also been postponed through at least Jan. 4, 2021. This includes boys/girls basketball, boys/girls hockey, wrestling, Knowledge Bowl, One Act Play and speech. The District Command Team will examine county threshold numbers on Jan. 4 and determine whether winter sports can safely begin.

“We ask that everyone continue to be vigilant and follow all MDH COVID-19 guidelines so that we can bring our students back into our schools for in-person learning and participating in extracurricular activities,” Christ said in a letter sent to parents concerning the sports cancellation.

The district’s Kids Club will remain open and available for current and new families, including during the three days of teacher planning next week. Tier I essential employees are also able to receive free childcare from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tier I essential employees include people working in the following fields: health care and public health, food and agriculture, judicial, law enforcement, public safety, educators and school staff and first responders.

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