Schools in Douglas County are evaluating how and if to offer distance learning during the mandatory school shutdown ordered by Gov. Tony Evers.

K-12 schools in the state must close March 18 and not reopen until April 6 at the earliest per the governor’s order, which came out March 13 as most schools were preparing for a week-long spring break.

Evers' executive order also suspended all spring sports activities — including training, practices, scrimmages and contests — from March 18 to April 6. Schools and coaches may not bring students together or be involved with students during this time for any extracurricular or athletic purposes.

The Wisconsin High School Forensics Association canceled the rest of the forensics season, including district competition on March 26, as well as state competition April 17-18.

The Wisconsin State Music Association has canceled the district solo and ensemble festivals and concert festivals scheduled March 16 through April 18. A decision for concert festivals beyond April 18 is expected to be made in late March.

The Family, Career and Community Leaders of America organization canceled its upcoming events.

Superior

Laptops were sent home with students at Superior middle and high schools on Friday, March 13. Students in elementary schools were sent home with a notebook, pencils and books to read. Following Evers’ order, the Superior School District notified parents that it will be sending out a communication about distance learning to families before spring break ends on March 23.

According to the District Administrator Amy Starzecki's office, the district will be offering online learning and food service during the shutdown. Information will be going out to families and is available on the district's coronavirus update page.

Maple

The School District of Maple plans to close through April 6, according to information shared with families on the district website. Administrators met Monday to discuss options for offering education to homebound students. Parents and teachers should watch for updates.

Tiger’s Den Daycare will be closed March 18 and reopen April 6.

The district intends to serve free breakfast and lunch at two locations, Iron River Elementary and Northwestern High School, beginning March 23 on days school would have been in session, if the state allows. Parents should be watching Skylert, the district website and social media platforms for more information on whether meals will be available and how to order.

Cathedral

Cathedral School will follow its plan for extended school closure upon completion of spring break, according to information shared with families via Facebook by Principal Jaime Samarzyia. Families can expect to receive communication regarding the distance learning plan before the end of spring break.

Maranatha

Maranatha Academy will extend spring break to two weeks. On March 30, online classes will resume for students in kindergarten through grade 12. Administrator Cheree Waring said Maranatha staff members have been training over the last two weeks to take instruction online. Watch for updates on the school's website.

“We’ve taken a pretty proactive approach,” she said, both to protect the health of vulnerable members of the community and to make sure students are ready for the next grade come fall.

Solon Springs

Students in the Solon Springs School District did not return from spring break as planned March 16. Instead, teachers met for a two-day in-service to discuss alternate ways of offering education and services while schools are shut down, according to School Board President Angela Botner. District Administrator Frank Helquist said the school will open for a few hours March 18 for parents and students to collect their school books and computers in preparation for learning from home.

The district is tackling the fluid situation as it evolves.

"They don't have a textbook for this," he said.

Solon Springs parents are being contacted individually to assess their child care and nutritional needs while the school building is shut down.

Staying active

The fitness center and pools at the Superior Douglas County Family YMCA will close from March 18 to April 6 to align with current school closures. The early childhood education programs in Superior will continue during regular hours. The YMCA is offering an online fitness program for adults and kids to do at home. Visit Y360 On-Demand for more information.

Energy extension

Superior Water, Light & Power announced March 16 that it would immediately suspend any disconnections for residential customers having financial hardship. Wisconsin's winter disconnection moratorium for residential utility customers has been extended through the public health emergency. All non-emergency customer site visits are also being suspended.

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