COVID-19 Update

2021-22 School Year Information on Covid-19

The Truman Public School board passed the following 

The numbers in Martin County are SLOWLY dropping but are still above 100 as reported for our use this week, October 18, 2021.  Covid and other ailments are going around.  Please keep your child home if they are sick.  Thank you.  

The Truman Public School will be "highly recommending masking" to start this school year.
There is no mandated mask requirement, yet we will continue all of the other \successful mitigation activities as we did this past school year.  

MASKS ARE RE!QUIRED ON ALL public transportation and this includes all of our busses. 

Our staff is dedicated to being good role models and especially for those that are most at risk. 
Parents, we will leave this decision in your hands as we are all on the same page to keep our students safe, educated and healthy the best way we know. 
Students will start the year as normal as possible and our goal will be to keep it that way. 

*We will continue to require distancing* 
*Classroom desks to be distanced from each other*
*Hand Sanitizer in each classroom to be used when entering and leaving*

We will continue to limit visitors to the front doors and office area.
Bus Information
Students will continue to distance when moving from the buses to their entrances.
The CDC is still requiring masks to be worn on public transportation. This is a not a district decision the board can change.  School buses are considered public transportation.
FALL entrance areas:
K-2 - enter at elementary doors
3-6 - doors by the cafeteria
7-12 - high School doors.

High School Students will use their lockers this year and they will not be assigned to homerooms unless needed.
High School students will move from class to class, we will continue to require distancing in the hallways.
Elementary students will also be able to use their lockers and move around the building. 
Lunch and cafeteria groupings are still yet TBD.  We believe that this will vary from grade to grade. The CDC does not suggest putting large groups of students together indoors.  We are able to mitigate this effectively.

If there are cases or suspected cases of Covid-19 within the building, we will isolate and contact parents as in the past. We are required to continue quarantine with individuals that are not vaccinated or not able to be vaccinated. 
  Vaccinated persons are not required to quarantine.  If this does happen, we will go over the virtual options available.

We are hopeful that we are not forced to go to any type of distance learning scenario, but we at 
TPS are prepared for this as we were last year to do the best that we can.  
We would hope that if we had to move to distance learning that it would be for a short amount of time.   
Please continue to check back for updates or e-mail us at or our individual e-mail addresses on this website.  Thank you for allowing us the privilege of educating your children.  

2020-21 Information to Archive

COVID - 19 Resource Page

Thank you for keeping up with the TPS Covid Resource Page.

On Monday, August 22nd, the TPS Board of Education voted unanimously for the base model of 
K-12 full-time - in person.  With this model there are several precautions that the school district is taking but there are also things that we are reminding parents of as well. 

Here are the key details:   
Each day we would require that you screen your child at home:
*If you or your child are experiencing any COVID symptoms (e.g. fever, cough, chills, nausea, shortness of breath by itself or other symptoms such as muscle pain, sore throat, fatigue, congestion, loss of sense of smell or taste, gastrointestinal symptoms of diarrhea, vomiting or nausea.)
*If a person has a new symptom (for example; new loss of smell as an example, it is recommended that person stay home and talk to their health care provider about testing for Covid-19, even if this is the only symptom.    *Follow protocol if you or family members symptoms continue to worsen.  You can call the school to go over the decision tree for any type of quarantine or suggestion of. 
*Each morning we are asking that you take your child's temperature.  We are NOT taking temperatures at school so this is important.  If your child has a fever, please do not send them to school. 

TPS will follow the MDH Decision Tree for Covid-19 to make decisions. 
Our school has a dedicated isolation room by the office where if your child becomes ill during the school day will spend time supervised until you are able to come and get them.  We ask that you come immediately after being contacted that we feel your child should go home. 
We will work directly with our public health and state team headed up by the South Central Service Cooperative on the notification/communication aspects of Covid-19 cases in the school as directed by our health team professionals.  

Please see the  NEW TPS SAFE LEARNING PLAN DOCUMENT - FALL 2020  This plan has been submitted to MDE for approval for fall opening - in person - full time K-12 - September 8, 2020

On August 22, 2020 the TPS board of Education passed the MSBA model Face Covering Policy which has been adopted by public schools across Minnesota.  Read Policy #808 on face coverings HERE.
This policy covers the following:
Students in Kindergarten - 12th grade are required to wear a face covering.  The policy will explain which are appropriate. Students in grades K-8 may qualify for an accommodation such as a shield for a medical or disability diagnosis.  The policy is clear that if an accommodation is being requested a medical note from a Dr. is required.  If your child is on an IEP, 504 plan or has a medical condition, a team will determine the accommodation.  An accommodation does NOT include NOT wearing a mask or shield or other if applicable.  If this does not work, distance learning will be offered to students as it is in place for others.  
Students in K-8 qualify for a shield, students on an IEP, 504 or documented health related issue can be given a shield as an accommodation. 
All adults and visitors according to the policy must wear a face covering when entering the school.  The district has extra disposable masks at each door if they are forgotten.  

Hand Sanitizer 
The district has hand sanitizer stations at each door.  Please use this when coming into the building and then leaving the building.  These will also be used for all entering and leaving all classrooms daily

TPS Incident/Command Team Notes from meeting held on August 20th, 2020 with members of the school board, staff, parents and students.   Please click HERE to view the minutes.  TPS will e in-person 
full-time all students K-12 starting on Sept. 8th for High School and Sept. 10 for elementary. 

Truman Public School High School Hybrid AND Elementary All in full time 






High School 



In person 


High School 



In person



Distance Learning

Groups A and B

PLC Schedule

High School 



In person



High School 



In person



Elementary  Pre-K-6 

All in Full Time

8:10 - 3:10

Elementary  Pre-K-6 

All in Full Time

8:10 - 3:10


Elementary Pre-K-6 

All in Full Time

8:10 - 3:10


Elementary Pre-K-6 

All in Full Time

8:10 - 3:10 


Elementary Pre-K-6 

All in Full Time

8:10 - 3:10 




Questions/Answers about the re-opening of TPS for the 2020-21 school year.

TPS will be open full time for all students Pre-K -12 this fall.

We are so excited to be with our students and put our family back together! I have spent time going through the family surveys, (thank you) and hopefully I have answered every question I could at this time.  Please take time to read through all of this information which I felt was important to get out to you at this time.  There is MUCH, MUCH more to plan.   

Our schools represent our communities and it is imperative that we all work together to maintain a healthy while different school environment to keep the spread of this potential life changing virus from closing our schools in Truman and the state again.    We do not want to have to shut down again so asking for your help, patience and support is key to our successful opening.  We have spent much time planning and have much more to do.  We have been thoughtful, but yet we know that we have missed something.  Please know that your input has been the MOST valuable in putting our plans together. 

There are important links to the Government regulations for Mn. schools to open safely as well as information on TPS plans to re-open safely.  We thank you for the opportunity to work with your children and also appreciate working with parents, grandparents and community members.   If you have additional questions regarding our opening, please do not hesitate to call the school at (507) 776-2111 or e-mail at   If you would like my personal cell phone number, please e-mail me.   Thank you.  Lisa Shellum

What will the school have available to maintain cleanliness during the school day for students?

Our priority is the health and safety of all of our students and staff.  We will  require  distancing in the classrooms with desks/tables, in the hallways and we will need to minimize movement in the building, yet give students a chance to change spaces. and maintain cleaning throughout the school day.  We know the importance of students having individual spaces and we have formulated a plan that there should be no sharing of supplies and created rotations in the high school so that cleaning of chairs and desk spaces can be cleaned several times per day.  Hand sanitizer stations will be located throughout the building and at each classroom door, entry doors and other spaces.   The hallways will be prepared so that students, staff, parents and others will safely know distancing requirements. Students in grades Pre-K-2nd grade will be using "hula hoops" to distance themselves when entering the building and walking in the halls.  This will ensure that they are able to have their own "bubble" to distance.  These may be used in the classrooms, in PE and/or other situations for them to sit in.  The district will provide the hula hoops.   There will be signage and persons students will be chaperoned much more than usual while in the common  hallway spaces.  The custodians will be cleaning rooms after students have been in them during the day, teachers will be prepared to rotate and/or have 2 spaces available to them for alternating classrooms while our custodial staff assists during the day to clean. Main areas such as door knobs, bathroom spaces and common spaces will be monitored and cleaned by custodial staff several times per day.   We will do our very best every day to keep everyone safe.  

What are the requirements and what will TPS doing to ensure the safety of my child during school?

TPS will using the following daily procedures:  

Students will be distanced in the classrooms, in the hallways, and in any space that they are in. Students may be distanced and have to be spread into 2 spaces, but we have the capability to use google meet within the building as well for students to get the lesson and instruction with the teacher then moving around from room to room. 

Students will be in assigned classrooms Pre-K-6th grade and assigned homerooms in 7-12.

Students will have supervision while in the hallways to ensure distancing.  While we will do our VERY best, we cannot watch every single one, every minute.  We are going to work hard with them on following these rules so that we can stay in school. 

Masking will be required unless special circumstances exist

Social distancing will be required throughout the entire building

Students will be required to report to their  assigned classrooms immediately when entering the building.

High school students will be assigned a homeroom to report to before the day begins. 

Students will be required to distance as much as possible when outside walking into the building on the sidewalks

Students will be given information on locker assignments or other accommodations for coats 

High school students will be allowed to carry a back-pack to each class with necessary items.

 Students will be required to use hand sanitizer and  in MANY places and many times throughout the day.  We will also encourage hand-washing during the day.  If your child has sensitive skin, please let us know.

Students will be required to use hand sanitizer when getting on the bus, getting off the bus, when entering each classroom and leaving each classroom. We are prepared to have this available during the day.  There will also be stations at each entrance for visitors. Children will not use this, they will before entering their classes. 

Will TPS be in school full time?  What will school look like?

Yes, TPS is slated to start school on September 8th full time.  High school students start on Sept. 8th and elementary (so far) will start on September 10th.   TPS students in grades Pre-K - 12 will be in school full time.  Age 3 year old pre-school is offered 2 mornings per week.  Age 4 pre-school will be offered as in previous years with the exception of Wednesdays.  In the past both the morning and afternoon groups were brought in together.  This year for safety, Mrs. Bowers will give guidance on how this day will look.   

Grades K-6.  Students in grades K-6 will be in their classrooms.  Classrooms will have student desks distanced and teachers have cleaned their rooms to accommodate the distancing.  Some classrooms with larger numbers may be re-located in order to maintain the distancing of desks. 

Grades 7-12.   Students in grades 7-12 will be assigned a homeroom class where they will be for their required classes.  Teachers will move to them.  Elective classes will rotate between two rooms to allow for cleaning in-between.   

What is the difference between online school, home schooling and TPS online?

Online school which is what TPS-online will offer is school where the student is at home 100% of the time.  Most online schools have daily lessons that are taped and teachers/students communicate through a forum on the internet or e-mail.  There is some communication by phone, but it is very limited.  This may change with all of the technology advancements, but traditional on-line schools do not offer google meet or zoom meetings in person with students. It is very independent and the school which is actually in a building is like in an office.  Virtual schools are not brick and mortar.     If you are considering homeschooling your child, this is something that needs to be told to your home district.  If you are open enrolled to TPS, you must consult with your home school district to get the requirements.  I will link the Minnesota Department of Education requirements of parents home schooling their children soon.  There are curriculum requirements as well as assessment requirements.  All of this information has to be reported to the public school yearly that you live in.  When a child is home schooled, there are options for special education but this has to still be done through the public school.  If you are considering this, please look to the Minnesota Department of Education or contact Eva Sonnabend – home school liaison for TPS.    TPS – online is a virtual school that will be taught by your child’s teacher while you are at home 100% of the time.   There are 2 options available, please read further and contact us so that your student and family are still able to be a part of the TPS community while being at home this fall. 

Will there be early entrance conferences?

At this time I will work with the elementary teachers to find a way to still have these very important conferences.  Please stay tuned to how this can be done.  

Is my child required to come to school if I have a health concern for them or a family member and choose to keep them home?  

Your child is NOT required to come to school if you have any concerns about their health, your health, a family member's health, or you simply want to keep them home because of Covid-19.   We will work with all of you individually with the two models that the district has developed to ensure that your child can still be a part of our family.  

What models will the school be offering this fall?  What is TPS - online and TPSIS?

Truman Public School is proud to offer TPS - online and TPSIS which is in-school.      

TPS - online 

Your family will have two choices using TPS - online.  We are going to be using the Google platform and with this your child can live-stream into the class during the entire school day OR the teachers will have the capability of taping their lessons for them to be watched at any time during the day.  In the declaration if your child is NOT going to be live-streaming, there will be a requirement worked out to take attendance which is required by the guidance.  The school will encourage those students at home to live-stream with their teachers and classmates daily and all day if possible as this is very important for their social and emotional health. 

Students will be asked to let us know if they will be live-streaming daily or using the taped lessons.  This is EXTREMELY important for attendance reasons.  Please understand that we cannot "guess" daily that they will complete the work using the taped lessons.  It is important for parents to be in contact with the school as usual to call in their child if they are to be absent, even during live-streaming.  

Students that choose TPS-online will be assigned a staff member to assist them with by family.  We know the difficulty of having more than one child and keeping organized with online so this year children will NOT have to share devices if they are at home and you will have one contact to get in touch with.  You are always encouraged to work with individual teachers, but it will be easier to have your liaison in the school help with this.   Remember that your child is very talented and all are able to use the devices.  Elementary lessons that are taped will just be the teacher giving the lesson.  The tape will end while the teacher is working with the students that are in the classroom, but those that are live-streaming will be a part of the day. We are asking them to work with families to ensure that the workload is not a burden for families that would like to keep their children at home or at a daycare during the day while they are at work.  Please be in contact with staff as they are MORE than wiling to work with you.   Homework and other requirements of those at home will be worked out individually between the teacher and the family.  

TPSIS - Truman Public School - In School 

This model is for all students that choose to be in the school building whether all in full time or if we are asked to change to the Hybrid model.    Families will be asked about this on the declaration document.  

Can my child move between the two models, TPS - online and TPSIS?

Yes, 1 time per trimester.   We are asking that families choose a model to begin the school year.   If at any time during each trimester the family or one of the children choose to change, there will be one change allowed.  For example:  If you choose TPSIS and then decide that you want your child to stay at home, you may change for the rest of the trimester and then determine which model for the next trimester.   We will not be asking parents to "declare" each trimester.  We will assume that if we do not hear from you that your child/ren will continue on the model they were in the last day of the trimester.  

What does it mean to "declare" between TPS online and TPSIS?

Parents will be sent a "Declaration Form"  the week of August 10th that needs to be returned by August 24th letting us know how they would like their child to start school in the fall.  

  Fall 2020 Parent Declaration Form for TPSIS or TPS - Online - CLICK HERE TO FILL OUT and SUBMIT

Will there be sports this fall? 

Yes, Cross Country will be held.  Football and Volleyball have been moved to a date in March so there will be a season.  Stay tuned to what will happen to Winter sports this year and how the spring schedule will work.  

Will there be Community Education events this year?

Yes,  I have talked with Mr. Utermarck and he will plan on events that can be properly distanced for students and adults throughout the year. 

What if I work and I want my child to stay home, but they are in a daycare?

The school is prepared to tape the lessons for your child during the day and parents to access them when they are done with work.  We know that daycare providers may not have the capability of monitoring if students were expected to be in class at a certain time.  While the live-streaming for older kids is always an option from daycare or anywhere, if parents are going to use the videos later in the day please talk to the instructors about how to do this as just essential information in order to complete assignments will be required. 

What if I work and want my child to stay home and live-stream, is this an option?

Yes, if your child is old enough to stay home legally and if you believe that they will be responsible enough to live-stream their classes regularly.  If this is something you are considering, if there are issues with this, we hope that we are able to come up with a plan so that they do not miss days because you have to work.

Will we be able to use paper/pencil while at home and if we choose TPS online?  Will this get returned to the teacher?

This will be worked out with the teacher.  We are finding that Covid-19 still stays on paper products for not just hours but days.  We felt that it was not safe to collect assignments for teachers to grade knowing that parents would be wanting to see grades faster than Covid-19 would allow our teachers to get the papers and grade them.  I will continue to consult with the nurse and YES, there will paper/pencil activities that can be delivered and we will work on picking them up this year.  Last year we learned much about this so will continue to work with making things better. 

Will my child have their own I - pad/Chromebook?

Students in grades K-6 will have their I-pad and Chromebook kept in the classroom as a classroom set unless we are asked to return to hybrid or distance learning.  Students in grades 7-12 will have a one on one device daily.  The district is investing more money into the devices so there is an expectation that they are treated properly so that they will last.  Replacement for a new Chromebook is $250.00  for the Chromebook and $20.00 for a case if needed.  Our IT person will set prices for repairs and loss of cords or other.  A  new I-pad replacement cost including the case is  $325.00.    

Will my child have a school e-mail?

Yes, in order for us to use Google Classroom with all of the students.   Every student in Grades K-12 will have a school e-mail and password.   If your child has an I-pad, e-mail can be found by going into a brower and going to  If another way will be possible, we will let you know.   In order to get to google classroom on an I-pad, students MUST be logged into their e-mail.  

How do I get into Google Classroom?

In order to access google classroom, a student must have a school g-mail account.  In the upper right hand corner of the g-mail when open there are 9 dots.  When you open the 9 dots the google classrooms that they are assigned to will show up.  If your child has a chromebook, the google classroom (looks like a green chalkboard) is on the bottom link.  

What if we are at home and do not have internet?

If you do not have access to internet, please contact the school. 

What about the Internet at my home, the school, teacher's homes?

We apologize that the internet is not always the most reliable in homes, in our school or in teacher's homes.  We cannot help this and we are asking for understanding if this is a problem.  The district is looking into other options and at this time hoping to have something very good in place for fall.  There are many people looking for this in the Truman area so many know that there is a waiting list.  This is the same for the school.  We thank you for your patience in advance.  

Will my child be required to have 2 sets of school supplies?

No,  if you are purchasing school supplies, please keep a few things at home this year.  We will certainly send things home if we need to and you can always call us for assistance in getting things for your family. 

What if I feel my child got "behind" last spring in school?

We will do EVERYTHING possible to assess and work with you and your child if this indeed happened. We anticipate and it has been recommended to spend time reviewing and catching up right away.  Children are very resilient and we are working and thinking of other supports that we can put into place after the school year begins with any child that we feel would benefit from extra "studies" intervention or instruction.  

If we have to go to hybrid where the students are home a few days a week or distance learning will the curriculum stay the same?

Our plan is to have school all day every day.  This is a requirements this year of the state so teachers will be teaching as they would during the normal day through live-stream and the availability of the lessons being taped. 

Will I be required to do 6 hours of school work if I choose to keep my child home and use the taped sessions?

If this is a choice that you make, your older children should be responsible to watch the lecture videos and complete the work.  If you have younger children, the videos will be shorter with the lessons.  In the elementary K-6 both the reading and math curriculum including instructional videos from the companies, the textbooks and other assignments can be assigned directly from that platform.  They will all be posted to the Google classroom so that you can find them easily.   Essential standards and consultation with the classroom teacher on the requirements will be scheduled as we know that parents cannot work all day and teach all night.  We will strive for a better balance. 

Will teachers be teaching from home this year if we are on Distance Learning or any day?

Teachers that request to stay home for reasons outlines in the Gov. order may do so.  Our staff will be required to teach from the building during all three scenarios this year as we are NOT on a stay at home order.    This would only change if our state had to close down and we were put on this order again.   We feel that our classrooms even if distance learning are more like home to everyone and this is where we will be.   Last year all teachers were required to post their office hours on their website.  Teachers have a choice in their schedule and they again will post these hours.  A school day for a teacher is either 7:45 - 3:30 or 8:00 until 

Will there be a homework room this year?

We are in the process of discussing what a homework room would look like this year?  It is a popular place on Tuesday's and Thursday's.  We will give more notice on this after school starts. 

Will there be choir/band/elementary music?

At this time, we are planning on having these classes, we do not have specific guidance on singing or playing instruments in a large group.  We will continue to get guidance on this.  For distancing, if we are able to have these classes, we will need to find a large enough space to distance the children appropriately. 

Will there be library?

Yes, there will be library but Mrs. Wille will be traveling to elementary classrooms as we are not able to clean the library space as much as would be needed in between classes.  The checking out of books will be coordinated between the classroom teacher and Mrs. Wille.  We are unsure of what this will look like.  Returned books will be cleaned appropriately and not shelved for a period of 2-3 days for use by another student. 

What platform does the school use and why?

Our school uses JMC incorporated as the student platform and all teachers will be required to use Google Classroom/Google meet this year.  We will NOT be using separate platforms.  There will be APPS or other areas that your child needs to go, but I will be requiring teachers to upload this information ALL into their google classrooms.  Teachers may have a webpage that they will use to update you on their classroom, their hours will be posted and other news, but this will be for parents to check regularly as they do the main page.  The school uses JMC as it is a small school and for those that know of other platforms such as Campus, this program is very costly for a small school.  JMC is being updated and there will be more parent friendly areas to go to.  We will know more about this during August and September.  Eva Sonnabend is our district rep for JMC and has been training this summer.    

How will I find my child's grades?

JMC updates grades as soon as the teacher posts them online.  Each family needs to contact the school to get a family log-in.  with a family log-in you can see all of your children at the same time.  Your child will also have access through his or her own passwords as well.  Do not hesitate to contact us with any questions regarding this platform. 

If my student misses many days because of illness or having symptoms and required to quarantine 1 time or more will they fail?

No,  just like in any other school year, please be in contact with the office and arrangements will be made to work with your child. 

Will my child be transported to school and back home?

Yes,  there will be regular bus service.  In order to maintain some type of distancing on the busses we will ask that as many parents that are able and willing to transport during this time to do so.  The requirements for our busses with all students all in full time is to distance as much as possible.   If we are asked to change to the hybrid model, we will then have to distance at 50% capacity of the bus.   We will be sending out more information regarding bus routes via our work with Ron Lenz and the bus service.  Distancing protocol will be in place for students when they get off of the bus on the sidewalks going into the school to the extent possible.  Masks may be taken off for a brief time while outside before entering the building, but distancing must occur.  They must be put back on before entering the building.

Will it help if my children ride the bus and I or an older sibling are able to transport them 

throughout the Covid-19 pandemic?

YES, if you are able to bring them to school and pick them or allow an older sibling to drive when your children would normally ride the bus, we are encouraging any family to do this.  We love being able to transport your children, but the more distancing we can do on the busses at this time, the better.   With the all-in model (which we want to keep) there are no distancing requirements, but we will be pro-active in working this out per bus route. 

Will the times of school be changed?

Please stay tuned to this.  I am working on creating a schedule that will work for teachers to have more supervision time but we still have to have the minimum requirements of so many hours/minutes for the state.  We may be changing the times of the school day but it will not be more than 15 minutes.  This will allow for high school teachers to help walk classes to and from others if needed.  The time will only vary by a maximum of 7.5 minutes in the morning and 7.5 minutes in the afternoon for a total of 10-15 if needed to meet state requirements, yet be able to help supervise during passing times etc.  more carefully.  Stay tuned. 

Will the elementary and high school start times or times they are moving in the building be staggered?

The high school requirements and elementary requirements for children's hours are a bit different. There is less required time for an elementary student.  If we find that this will work for distancing on the buses better we may stagger arrival and departure times like they have in the metro areas for years.  Yes, staggered release times within the school day will happen.  We are working on those details now. 

What will we be doing for social and emotional well being?

This is a difficult time and we are going to try to make this "strange" school day as normal as possible even though we are wearing masks, shields, behind plexi-glass and standing apart from one another.  We instinctively in school are together, we spend time socializing even in the learning environment and once we get used to this, it will be the "new" normal.  We have spent time this summer with social and emotional learning as we know how important that this is and how much our students have missed this.  We will have new activities for the classrooms as well as more support for individual students.  Mrs. Anderson is now the Dean of Students and Ms. Sherman will be able to do more individually and with classes.  We will all be doing what we can so please reach out if you need.

What are the masking requirements for my child?

Students that are in the 3 and 4 year old pre-school (even if they turn 5 during the year) are NOT required to wear masks during the school day.  They are also not required to wear a mask on the bus.  Students in grades K-12 and staff are required to wear a protective covering if able.  Students and staff that have a health issues or other reason that a protective covering cannot be worn must consult with administration only to ensure that everyone is treated with respect and we can deal with properly if needed.  

Acceptable protective covering MUST be school appropriate and will be treated as part of the dress code.  coverings include masks, shields, gators, bandana and other that are in the Mn. Gov. guidance.    The district WILL allow students to wear hats (with a bill) during the school day this year with their mask or shield.    This does not include stocking caps or hoodies, or any other inappropriate hat.  Administration reserves the right to ask students to remove hats if unacceptable.     It is important for everyone to feel comfortable with this new situation.    Hats are especially positive if a child would prefer to wear a shield or not feel so self-conscious.  In some classes the instructor will require a shield and teachers will be wearing them as well so that the important communication cues and simply communicating can be easier.  

Will my child have to wear the protective covering  (mask/shield) all day?

No,  your child will not have to wear this all day.  We know that this could be uncomfortable.  There are exceptions for the classrooms (especially outdoors) meetings, and ther situations in the government guidance.  We will only require the masks to be worn when the guidance deems so.  Masks are not required when eating, during lunch break/recess and PE. 

When are masks required?

MASKS are required when in the classrooms,office, hallways and in common areas while moving about the building.  All visitors entering the building must wear a mask unless special circumstances apply just as for the students.   

What if my child forgets their mask?

The school district has a supply of extra masks and shields.  We also have a community volunteer that has made over 150 masks for our school students.  We may develop a protocol to help with washing as well.  It is important that cloth masks are washed regularly.

Do I have to buy a mask for my child?

No,  the school will have 1 cloth masks provided for each student.  A volunteer has also donated masks for students.  The school will have disposable masks available on the bus and at school. 

Will my child have to wear a mask on the bus? Can they get on the bus without one?

Yes, masks when applicable (see above) are required on the busses. There will be disposable masks available on each bus for those that forget.  All special circumstances for masking apply to the busses too including PreK guidance. 

Will my child or family be forced to distance learn if they do not wear a mask?

The guidance is specific that your child is welcome to school and that accommodations must be made for students that have a documented health condition, disability or a reasonable accommodation  is required.    A policy has been developed by MDE that the board will be approving on August 24th which will be specific to what the Executive order states and the exact language that Truman as well as other public schools will be using.   Students without a documented medical, mental health or otherwise allowed reason for not wearing a mask are required to do so at all times.   This policy will be sent to all families regarding what the state of Mn. is requiring and how this affects the students in Truman and all Mn. schools.     The district will be working with all classes on the importance of social and emotional support for each other as everyone has individual needs.  There will be administrative consequences for students that tease, shame or act inappropriately to each other either FOR wearing protective covering or NOT being able to wear the protective covering.  We ask for parent support if this issue would come up. 

If my child has a health concern or a family member a health concern or other concern what are my options for school, wearing masks or other?

See above for requirements or please contact administration to discuss your thoughts and options. 

If my child does not wear a mask for a health or other reason, will they be forced to wear a shield?

No,  your child will not be forced to wear a shield.  The guidance will be specific surrounding the circumstances regarding shields just as it will be specific on the guidance for who is required to wear a mask.  There are specific exemptions that apply to students and staff and the guidance adopted by the school board will state the requirements for this exemption.  

Will teachers wear masks/shields?

Yes, unless there is a health reason all employees will be wearing as mandated  protective face coverings.   When employees are working alone or in other situations as covered by the government guidance, protective face coverings are not required until they are around others in the building.    Your child may come home and tell you that their "teacher" or even Principal was not wearing a mask.  We will all be following the regulations, but there are times that your child may see us from a distance or in a situation where a mask is not feasible or required.  If you ever have a question, please contact us.  

Do parents and visitors have to wear a mask when in the school building?

Yes,  all parents and teachers must follow the state rule on mandatory face coverings unless other circumstances apply. 

Can my teacher have class outside if they want and are able?

Your child may come home and tell you that they had school outside!  Yes, this is something that we will encourage teachers to consider. daily and when the weather allows.   We will encourage teachers to be outdoors as much as possible.  While it is not required for coverings to be worn outside, it will be recommended.  If classes or a break is taken outside and masks are taken off  social distancing must be maintained.  

Will my child be "stuck" in one room all day?

No,  while we know that the students will be in a room or just a few places each day, we will work hard to get them out of the spaces to move around (while distancing) to the extent possible. 

Are visitors allowed in the building?

We will be restricting visitors to the building as provided in the guidance.  Parents, when you need to be at the school,  please call ahead this year to let us know you need to come to the building.  All are required to report to the office as we want to keep good records just in case for everyone's safety.      If you have questions, please let us know.

Is the school authorized to give a COVID test in school?  

NO,  there is NO testing of students in school.   Only healthcare professionals in specific locations are allowed to do this. 

What happens if my child gets ill during the day or if my child has a fever in the morning?  

If your child is ill in the morning, please keep them home.   We will be very pro-active if any symptoms arise during your or if your child gets ill during school.  We will have a safe comfortable place for them to stay until you can arrive to pick them up.     They would need to be out of school until symptom free.  Guidelines put forth for students and staff on safe return to school or work will be posted soon.    Please  come to the main office and we will get your child to go home.  

What type of room is the "isolation" room if my child has symptoms or sick from something else?

The room we designate will be supervised, have a bed if needed, but a table and your child can work, lay down, or lie their head down.  This will be just like the nurse's office but probably better.  It will be close to the restrooms and the office.   We chose to call it "isolation" as per guidance but will be in a nice space until you can pick them up.  We will not be able to have students sitting in the office to wait for parents like we were before so we will have designated spaces.  This is all to keep safe.  

How will the restrooms be taken care of and how will this work?

We will be cleaning the restrooms several times per day.   The plan for how to allow students to use them during the day will be worked out as we cannot allow them out like we did before for fear of "clusters" and not knowing about it.  Elementary students will be supervised as we need to keep distancing and high school students will need to sign out of each area to leave the classroom whether it be for a restroom break or other.  

What if my child "tells" me that they are sick but exhibiting no symptoms?

This is a parent decision.  If you believe that your child is being honest with you and truly does not feel well, please keep them home.  If you have a child that may be prone to telling you they do not feel well just to NOT attend school, please consult with us so that we can make a plan in the beginning.  We want your child every day and we can work on a reward chart for the younger ones and maybe even the older ones.  We hope that they are ready to come back every day. 

Will I need a Dr. note for my child to come back to school?  

At this time we will be using the guidance HERE for possible quarantine and how to return after possible Covid-19 symptoms.  If you child exhibits illness that would require Dr. attention and/or hospitalization, please notify the school immediately. 

What happens if a child or staff member tests positive for Covid - 19.

At this time we have been told that for every single case we must report to our regional support office in Mankato.  They will in turn contact MDE/MDH and they will be in contact with us to give us the next steps.  You will be notified by us or them as to what the next steps would be and how they will conduct the tracing.

Will the entire school have to be on distance learning if there is just 1 case?

We do not believe that this will be the case.  We will turn the information over to MDE/MDH with the information that we have and they will guide us.  This is why it is going to be so important for us to have assigned rooms and spaces throughout the day.  

Will we know who the person is that tested positive?

At this time we are looking into this and do not have the final answer based on privacy but we will find out.  In any case, if there is a case of Covid-19 in our school, we will notify everyone that we are supposed to regarding the situation and  make sure all protocol is done so that everyone else can stay in school.    We will know more after August 24th when we are given the information on how to report cases. 

Will my child's temperature be taken before entering the building?

No,  not at this time.  The district is prepared to do this on a large scale if needed.  We are trusting parents to watch for any symptoms before school and to keep your child home.    

What are the symptoms that I should be looking for before sending my child to school?

If your child is sick at all the night before, please keep them home.  If they are exhibiting any of the symptoms at any time, keep them home and notify us.   Symptoms may appear anywhere from 2, 3 to 14 days after being exposed and can range from mild to severe.  We know that some people that have been exposed do not show any symptoms at all but would spread the virus anyway. Students and staff with the following symptoms need to stay home and may have Covid-19.  Many are related to other illnesses and in the past we know that students were able to attend school.  This year is different.  If you child has mild symptoms of even just a cold for the day that they are home, contact us as they could still participate in class.  Teachers that exhibit 

What if a family member is exposed to Covid-19 and in contact their child?

If a family member is exposed and in contact with their child, please contact the office.  We will need to follow the protocol given to us by our local health officials, the Minnesota Department of Health in consultation with the district.  The MOST important thing is to contact the school and let us know. 

What will happen if my child is teased, bullied or shamed if Covid - 19 is diagnosed with them or a family member?

The district is very pro-active with this type of behavior on a regular basis.  While we may not catch everything, anything that we are told about we do deal with.  Our policy with this will be strict.  We will consider this very inappropriate and depending on the severity of the teasing, bullying or shaming, consequences just as normal inappropriate school behavior would apply.   Students and families must be aware that people get sick, they get head lice and have other things happen to them.  We will continue to ask for your support if your child has 1 episode of this and if it continues will ask for your support as it will be considered bullying and that policy requires students to write reports, give presentations to classmates, parents and teachers about their inappropriate behavior.  

  What happens if a teacher gets sick during the day, quarantined or develops Covid - 19 and not able to teach?

If your child's teacher is not in the building the district has a substitute teacher already on staff and we would call for a sub as we would normally do.   In some cases if the teacher is exhibiting some symptoms, but maybe it is just a cold, they may be able to teach from home with another adult supervising their room (new technology, wow!).   If your teacher is quarantined, they will be able to teach from home to the school with the room being supervised as long as they are able.  If they quarantine and are able to return, they must follow the same protocol as students.  If a teacher is truly ill and has been diagnosed with Covid-19, sick at home or hospitalized, a sub will be provided for the classes.  In some cases, it may be Mrs. Shellum, Mrs. Anderson or Ms. Sherman.  We are all available to help in all of these situations. 

If my child is at home learning using the TPS-online,  will they still get a school lunch/breakfast?

At this time we are in the process of planning for your child to have a lunch.  The details are not finalized yet. 

If my child is sick and quarantined at home,  will they receive breakfast / lunch?

We do not know the answer to this question at this time.  We believe that if the time is going to be more than 

3 days arrangements may be made.  Parents are in charge of letting the school know and also requesting the meal(s) if this is the case.

What will lunch look like?  Will students go to the lunch room?

We are still working this out together with the kitchen staff, teachers and custodians. We know that not all students will be able to eat in the cafeteria daily so we are working on how students will get their lunches, have recess/lunch break.  

How does the district monitor the Covid-19 activity in Martin and Watonwan Counties?

Our school nurse and administration are involved in meetings with both counties Human Services and local health officials.  We will also have an assigned team consisting of a member of the South Central Service Cooperative, the Minnesota Department of Health and the MInnesota Department of Education.  They will continue to track the metrics of the area and report back to us after each 14 days.

How many cases must we have in Martin County to change our students to hybrid or distance learning.

The metric is dependent of how many cases per 10,000 residents of the county.  Watonwan county has a little less than 10,000 and Martin has right around 20,000.  This makes each area look very different.  Truman Public School has the majority of the students living in Martin County and the building structure is in Martin County so while we are involved with Watonwan County for informational and planning purposes, we will rely on Martin County data and Truman area data to determine our situations. 

What are the learning models and why are they different? 

It has been determined that the age of a child also affects the infection rate so the state devised this metric to determine the different scenarios and groupings that would be required if the spread of Covid-19 worsens in our area. 

There are 5 learning models that schools have been presented with.  

These models are not always the same for elementary or high school students.  

1) In-person learning pre-K - 12th grade - full time

2) In-person learning  Pre-K - 12th grade and Hybrid learning for secondary students 7-12.

3) Pre-K - 12th grade hybrid learning for all

4 Hybrid learning for Pre-K - 12th grade and Distance learning for secondary students 7-12

5) Distance Learning Pre-K - 12th grade full-time

What are the Learning Model Parameters and numbers of new cases to change the school model from in school - full time.

The number of new cases confirmed within every 14 day period are below for each county.  Truman Public Schools will use Martin County Data unless we are told that we needed to use Watonwan County numbers because of the amount of spread of the virus.  

These numbers based on every 10,000 residents of the county.

0-9  new cases in Martin County and 0-18 new cases in Watonwan County = 

In - school, all day, every day PreK-12 full time. 

                                10-19 new cases in Martin County and 20 - 38 new cases in Watonwan County = 

In-person learning for elementary students Prek-6; hybrid learning for secondary students 7-12

                                       20-29 new cases in Martin County and 40-58 new cases in Watonwan County = 

                                                                              Hybrid learning for all students

                                                 30-49 new cases - in Martin County and 60 - 98 new cases in Watonwan County = 

Hybrid learning for elementary students Prek-6;  Distance learning for secondary students 7-12

                                                 50+ new cases in Martin County and 100+new cases in Watonwan County = 

                                                                               Distance learning for all students

                                               Will the vending/pop machines be used by students this year?

Unfortunately, we do not believe that sharing the pop machine/vending machine will be a good idea this year.  We apologize for this inconvenience, but we cannot clean it several times per day and this area is used by several people daily.  We did have an after school concession stand last year and if we are able to make this a safe alternative, this will be put into place after school begins. 

                                                 What if my child has to visit the Principal's office or go to the office?

We are preparing to have situations and extra chairs available so that students would not be sitting in the same chairs.  If students have to come to the office, we will have distancing and other things such as plexi-glass barriers between us to work with them.  

What if my child is in Special Education or Title 1?  Will they be moving around the building like other years?

We are preparing so that your child will be able to attend in both the regular classroom and the special education classroom.  Each child will be given their own chair and if there is room in each special education space their own desk.  Even though there may only be 4-5 students in a room at the same time, the teachers have caseloads of 15+ each day that used to share spaces.  It will be worked out so that there NO shared spaces or that spaces are able to be cleaned in-between students. 

                           What if my child needs to be tested one on one for reading, math, special education or other?

The district staff will use shields, the children may be asked to wear a shield and not their mask for the assessment and there is also the capability of putting a plexiglass barrier in between.

                          Will my child still receive speech and other special education services such as OT/PT,  DAPE 
                                                                   or Early Childhood Special Education?

Yes,  all of the services that your child had will be in place again.  Your child's special education teacher may reach out to you but if the IEP is in place and you have questions, please contact them.  For Early Childhood Education  (babies to age 6, at home or in school,                                                                  please contact Mrs. Raske at

                                                                 Can a plexi-glass barrier replace a face covering?

We are going to research this answer as at this time we are all required to wear a face covering unless we are alone in a space. 

                                  What if my child's teacher has chosen to teach from home the entire trimester or year?

This is an option for staff if they have an underlying health condition of themselves or family or personal reasons that have been worked out through administration.  If this happens, the teacher will be prepared to teach through google classroom daily.  The room will be supervised at the school by another staff member. 

COMING SOON:  Links to the district plan that is submitted to MDE, 

Covid related handbook information, links to state agencies. 


At any time, please contact us with any questions. 

Lisa Shellum,
Sep 21, 2021, 6:29 PM
Lisa Shellum,
Jul 10, 2020, 1:31 PM