MMSD announces virtual learning to continue for 2nd quarter of school year

A Madison Metropolitan School District sign
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MADISON, Wis. — Madison schools will continue virtual learning for the second quarter of the school year, the district announced Friday.

The district says the decision comes after weeks of monitoring and reviewing local public health metrics, consultation with scientists and health experts, feedback from district families and staff and recommendations from the district’s senior leadership team.

“This was an agonizing decision for all of us,” MMSD Superintendent Dr. Carlton D. Jenkins said in a statement. “It is always our preference to have students in school buildings, learning face to face and engaging with teachers and staff, however at the heart of this decision was our ultimate responsibility to ensure the safety and well-being of everyone who enters our buildings each day.”

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The district says they recognize virtual learning has an especially big impact on students with disabilities, those still learning English, students transitioning to 6th and 9th grades and younger students between 4K and 2nd grade.

“We are continuing to fine tune our virtual learning approach, and MMSD’s planning team is committed in their work to listen, learn and improve the learning experience for these and all students,” Dr. Jenkins said.

The announcement comes on the same day that the district closed Toki Middle School and Orchard Ridge Elementary School after several people started feeling COVID-like symptoms.

Child care with the MSCR Cares program will continue, the district said. They will also continue distributing free meals to students, which they say is now up to 50,000 meals per week.

The second quarter begins on November 2nd and runs through January 22nd.