School model shift announced for Bemidji Area Schools

Bemidji Area Schools announced a shift in the learning model. Hybrid learning at the secondary schools will end Friday, with middle and high schoolers resuming distance learning on Monday, Nov. 30, after Thanksgiving.

“We have been clear in our messaging that we would likely be using all three learning models during the course of the school year. As COVID numbers have risen dramatically in the county, we have determined that it is now time to phase into a shift of learning models in the district,” said Bemidji Superintendent Tim Lutz in a release.

“Our ability to appropriately operate our school buildings has been increasingly difficult to fulfill when following Minnesota Department of Education guidelines.”

Elementary students will continue to do in-person learning, but there could be a possible shift for these students to go online, if there is no great improvement in the county’s case rate, after the Holiday Break. Students will not report to school Monday, Dec. 21, through Wednesday, Dec. 23.

“If numbers should improve before the start of the new year, the district could make an announcement that will reverse the plan to move elementary schools into a Distance Learning Model,” said the release.

That announcement will come no later than Wednesday, Dec. 30, according to a release.


Larissa Donovan is the News Director for the stations of Paul Bunyan Broadcasting and has been, almost without interruption, since Election Day 2016. She covers events and issues in north central Minnesota, which include local government, crime, courts, education, environment and social issues. She studied communications at Bemidji State University and received her degree in 2018. Larissa, native to the great state of New York, grew up in Bemidji, and enjoys spending her spare time with her family and pet cat. She also loves Star Trek, punk rock music and the theater.


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