Important 2020-2021 District E-mails
Below you can find copies of vital e-mails that Spectrum has sent out to the Spectrum community during the 2020-2021 school year. This is a great resource for families who are joining us throughout the school year.
Please see the file here with communication regarding Spectrum's learning plan for the fall.
Thank you for your ongoing support.
Welcome to the 2020-2021 school year!
As you might imagine, we'll be doing things a little differently to kick off this school year. We've been diligently working over the summer to prepare for such a time as this. Thank you for your continued grace, support, and partnership in the education of Spectrum's students. We are truly honored that you have chosen Spectrum for the education of your children.
The information linked here is extremely important as it takes you step by step through what you need to do prior to attending Open House. In addition, you may anticipate a second communication today that will walk you through step by step on how to sign up for student pictures. The date/time you choose for student pictures will drive when you attend Open House.
As always, if you have questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to us. We are here to help!
Bus stop information is now available on Infinite Campus Parent Portal. If you requested a bus stop (AM, PM, or both) for the days your student is on campus, you can find the information by going to Infinite Campus Parent Portal on the website here. Click on "More" on the left-hand side. Then Click "Transportation". Please note that, due to the 50% capacity limitation, bus stop assignments are only for the days students are scheduled to be on campus for first quarter. If you have any questions about your student's bus stop, please stop by the Transportation Table at Open House tonight or Thursday.
Lockers have also been assigned and can be found on Infinite Campus Parent Portal right above "Transportation". Please have your student find their locker when they are at Open House while they also familiarize themselves with the location of their classrooms.
We're looking forward to seeing you at Open House!
It was great to see so many of you at Open House this week! Thank you so much for working with the school to follow requirements from the Minnesota Department of Education and the Minnesota Department of Health in order for our students to return to school on Monday.
Please see the attached communication for what to expect on the first day of school, Monday, August 31st.
In addition, the school will be sending out a communication tomorrow with 3 important items - (1) mask/shield wearing options and protocols; (2) bus protocols; and (3) health protocols (or what parents will need to do before school each day to ensure their child is ready for and able to attend school).
Please see the attached document that lays out all of the requirements for riding on Northstar buses during Spectrum's hybrid program.
As promised, the student face covering requirements are attached to this communication. Please review and double check your student's face covering to ensure it meets the requirements.
Soon after you receive this communication, two additional items will follow - School Bus Requirements and the "Ready for School" Checklist.
Thank you, as always, for working with us to ensure Spectrum is able to continue with our hybrid learning plan.
Please see the attached document for a checklist for parents to use each day students are scheduled to be on campus to ensure the student meets the "Ready for School" requirements to attend on campus.
Spectrum Middle/High Picture Make-up Day!
Monday, September 14, 2020
8:00 a.m. – 2:45 p.m.
Spectrum High School Stage
17796 Industrial Circle NW
Elk River, MN 55330
Once again, Lifetouch Studios will be on site to photograph student pictures for those who were unable to
do so in August.
Due to the continued COVID-19 pandemic and the requirement to be compliant with the 50% building
capacity mandate, a specific appointment time will need to be booked – one for each student. Please
note: This Picture Make-up Day is taking place on Monday, September 14, 2020, which is a distance
learning day for all students. All pictures, regardless of grade, will be taken on the stage of the high
school building. Younger students and those who do not yet drive will need to make arrangements for
- To schedule a specific picture time (remember, each student needs their own time), please click
on the following link: https://spectrumhighschool.setmore.com/bqwwwl
After you have scheduled the picture time, online ordering may begin and will be open 48 hours
following the picture day, which will be September 16, 2020, at Lifetouch. All orders and payments are
handled by Lifetouch – not Spectrum. To order and pay for pictures CLICK HERE and enter in the
picture code: EVT3874F7.
Finally, please note that this date IS NOT for picture retakes – they will take place on Monday, October
If you have questions regarding signing up for a picture appointment, please contact Dawn Sorenson at
firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
As families begin to settle into routines for the school year, Spectrum is extending the deadline to purchase Chromebook insurance for your student/s devices. If you have not purchased insurance yet, you may do so until Wednesday, September 23. Chromebook insurance is $30 for the school year (or $15 per semester) with a $50 maximum for families with multiple students. Please see the 1:1 Chromebook User and Procedure Guide for coverage information.
1. "Chromebook Insurance - 1 Student" - $30/School Year
2. "Chromebook Insurance - 1 Student" - $15/Semester *You may adjust the amount from $30 to $15 once the item is in your cart.
3. "Chromebook Insurance - Family" - $50 Max/School Year
FOOTBALL AND VOLLEYBALL REGISTRATION
The MSHSL has approved fall seasons for football and volleyball. Practices and try-outs for each sport will begin on Monday, Sept. 28. Students must be in grades 7-12 with a current physical within the past three years. We will announce at a later time whether tackle bar football will be offered for middle school. All registration is online and payment must be received before the student may begin to practice. The current high school volleyball camp will be concluding at the end of this week. Current participants will receive a credit for the final week of the camp that may be applied toward future athletic registrations. Be sure to contact the athletic department if you have questions.
FOOTBALL AND VOLLEYBALL REGISTRATION LINK:
This message is intended to eliminate any confusion regarding next week's (10/12 - 10/14) schedule. The schedule is as follows:
* ALL student will attend virtual Advisory at 10 am
**Tuesday/Wednesday student group will attend school in-person
**Thursday/Friday student group will attend school virtually
**Tuesday/Wednesday student group will attend school in-person
**Thursday/Friday student group will attend school virtually
There is no school on Thursday, October 15th and Friday, October 16th due to MEA break.
Have a relaxing extended weekend!
Please read the attached message regarding the learning model for 2nd quarter at Spectrum and respond by Tuesday, October 20 ONLY if you want your student to switch to a different learning model for second quarter.
This message is intended to eliminate any potential confusion regarding Spectrum’s school schedule for the week of November 23rd. Since our in-person (hybrid) Tuesday/Wednesday students had the opportunity to be at school in-person prior to MEA, we want to give our Thursday/Friday in-person (hybrid) students the same opportunity prior to Thanksgiving Break. As a result, we are making a slight adjustment to our typical weekly schedule.
The schedule will be as follows:
Monday, November 23 (A Day: Periods 1-4)
- Students who typically attend school in person on Thursday/Friday will attend school in-person
- Students who usually attend school in person on Tuesday/Wednesday will attend school virtually and should plan to join their classes on line according to their regular A Day schedule
- Full distance learning synchronous students will need to plan on attending their A Day classes on line according to their regular A Day schedule
- Buses will be running the regular Thursday routes
Tuesday, November 24 (B Day: Periods 5-8)
- Students who typically attend school in person on Thursday/Friday will attend school in-person
- Students who usually attend school in person on Tuesday/Wednesday will attend school virtually and should plan to join their classes on line according to their regular B Day schedule
- Full distance learning synchronous students will need to plan on attending their B Day classes on line according to their regular B Day schedule
- Buses will be running the regular Friday routes
There is no school for students on Wednesday, November 25th - Friday, November 27th due to Thanksgiving break.
Have a relaxing holiday!
Please see the attached communication for information on the following:
1. A change in the school calendar for next week;
2. Information on Virtual Conferences;
3. Results of the 2nd Quarter Learning Model Survey; and
4. The process for determining a change in learning model moving forward.
As indicated in the communication sent about second quarter, Spectrum will be updating our community when the school is made aware of positive cases of COVID-19 within the community (whether employees or students). Since people do not attend school when they are symptomatic, students are not typically considered close contacts and there will be no action required. If they are, parents/guardians will be notified and given further direction. Please see the attached COVID-19 case update for this week.
Please see the attached communication for updates on (1) a no credit option for first semester, (2) open employment positions at Spectrum, and (3) Board approved calendar changes for the week of January 18-22.
As you know, Spectrum's Leadership Team has been gathering data in order to make an informed decision regarding the learning model for 2nd semester. The last piece of the process is to work with our Regional Support Team (comprised of representatives from the Minnesota Department of Health and the Minnesota Department of Education) to review the data and formalize the plan. Unfortunately, that was not possible this week, but we are hopeful to meet with them early next week. We apologize for the delay. Once the decision is made, we will communicate with you as soon as possible.
Thank you for your understanding.
Spectrum Middle School and Spectrum High School
Please see the attached information on the learning model decision for 2nd semester, starting January 20.
Student schedules for 2nd semester are now available on Infinite Campus (including the learning model chosen and assigned days of the week for those who will be attending on campus). Please log in here and review the schedule with your student. Questions regarding student schedules or learning models should be directed to your student's School Counselor here.
(1) If you indicated a need for transportation, route information will be available by Monday, Jan. 18.
(2) Tomorrow is the end of 1st semester. It's a good time to check in with your student to ensure all assignments are turned in.
(3) Schedule next week: Mon. (no school for students), Tues. (no school for students), Wed. (advisory only), Thurs. (full school day-A Day), and Fri. (full school day-B Day)
Spectrum is excited to welcome back 70% of our students in person 2nd semester. In preparation, we are providing reminders about and updates to the Ready for School and face covering requirements. Please review the attached communication before students return to school in person next week.
Please see the attached updates to the return to campus plan, including the following: (1) Adjustment to Grade Levels Returning on Campus; (2) Calendar Clarification; (3) Protocol Clarifications; and a (4) Survey Reminder (due February 4 by 8:00 a.m.).
Attached here is information provided by the State of Minnesota regarding the new Vaccination Connector system.
Please see the attached letter with an update on attendance policy implementation.
Please see the attached communication containing information (from MDE) on free COVID-19 testing for students and families.
Please see the attached communication for important updates on the following:
• The latest COVID-19 Information and its Impact at School;
• The Strategic Planning Process and Feedback Needed;
• A (Board-approved) Change in Calendar for the Last Week of School; and
• An Update on Graduation Planning.
Important 2019-2020 District E-mails
Below you can find copies of vital e-mails that Spectrum has sent out to the Spectrum community during the 2019-2020 school year. This is a great resource for families who are joining us throughout the school year.
Please see the attached letter detailing our Directed Study program for the 2019-20 school year.
Parent Portal Updates - 9-13-19
Please see the attached letter from Spectrum's Executive Director, Mr. DeBruyn, for information on updates on the Parent Portal for Infinite Campus. Thank You.
Lifetouch Studios will once again be at Spectrum on Friday, September 13, 2019 to capture student pictures for those who did not have their picture taken the evening of Open House in August. Please note that all picture re-takes will take place on Monday, October 14, 2019.
Student pictures will take place on the stage of Spectrum’s high school building. Students in grades 6-8 will be walked over (and back) to the high school building at the appropriate time by Spectrum staff.
Lifetouch will start student pictures at 8:00 a.m. If you have late arrival and/or are a fulltime PSEO student, please make sure that you are at Spectrum early, around 8:00 a.m., as Lifetouch will only be at the school in the morning – approximately 8:00 – 10:30 a.m.
The easiest and most convenient way for families to order and pay for pictures is by going to the Lifetouch website at www.MyLifetouch.com and enter the unique picture code for the September 13th date of EVT2H6XH9. The best time to order pictures is prior to September 13th; however, you may also order them after but must do so within 48 hours after they have been taken.
Commonly Asked Question for Volunteer Hours.
What is Helpcounter?
How do I enter my hours?
What if I’m not able to volunteer? Are there other ways I can contribute?
Spectrum will be conducting its annual School Board Election on Monday, April 20, 2020 and is seeking candidates to run in the upcoming election. Please consider your interest in becoming a member of Spectrum's robust and strategic board who collectively provide direction and guidance to the school.
If you believe strongly in the mission and vision of the school, than we need you! If you have financial, educational, business, human resource, or other experience that you feel would add value to the board, than we need you! If you have connections within the community that may bring benefit to the school, than we need you! If you would like to be a part of the governance team of a growing organization, providing policy oversight and assisting with the long-term strategic plan of the school, than we need you!
To determine your eligibility to run and for more information on the election, please see the attached document.
Thank you, and we look forward to hearing from you!
Spectrum is excited to explore bringing a therapy dog into our buildings on a weekly basis. We believe that there are many benefits of a therapy dog, including lowering stress and increasing attendance. We are also aware that there may be students or adults who have allergies or other concerns about dogs. We will do our best to work with families and staff to make this a positive and fun experience and try to lessen and/or alleviate concerns by announcing in advance when and where the dog will be. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Janice Dammeier, Volunteer Coordinator, at (763) 450-9850 or jdammeier@spectrumhighschool.
Therapy dogs through *Therapy Dogs International (TDI) are well trained and certified to work in places where a lot of people are present. They and their owners go through a certification process and follow strict guidelines to ensure safety and cleanliness.
The therapy dog that will be joining us weekly at Spectrum is "Mabel". Mabel is an 8 year old Goldendoodle. She has been a therapy dog through TDI for six years. Her owner, Shelby Howe, is a Spectrum parent. She indicates that Mabel loves to visit schools, colleges, and nursing homes. Mabel also enjoyed hanging out with Spectrum seniors as they waited to present their senior capstones recently.
*For more information on Therapy Dogs International, click here .
Apologies for the confusion. Here are some clarifications and corrections to information released yesterday regarding quarter 3 Service Learning grades.
1. Assignments posted, submitted, and graded throughout the quarter will remain as they are.
2. Assignments and assessments that were due on 3/18/2020 will be entered into the grading calculation as "exempt." This action will not impact on your student's final grade.
3.The final grade calculation will be based up work already posted and graded throughout the course of the third quarter service learning rotation.
4. Your students final grade will be posted as either a "Pass" or "Fail."
Quarter 4 Service Learning grades are currently postponed.
Dear Spectrum Parent/Guardian,
As previously indicated, in preparation for distance learning starting on Monday, March 30th, we are working hard to ensure all students have internet access at home (whether through wifi or connecting their phone). In order for the school to accurately access this information, we're asking that each family complete the following Internet Access Survey by tomorrow, Tuesday, March 24th, at 6:00 p.m.
Please click here to access the survey.
As noted in the communication sent Sunday morning, Spectrum will be opening all three buildings at specified times for students to pick up supplies, materials, and instruments. If your child needs to pick up items, please have them enter the buildings through the Event Entrance @ either building.
The buildings will be open at the following times ONLY:
*Tuesday, March 24th from 7:30-8:30 a.m. AND 3:30-4:30 p.m.
*Wednesday, March 25th from 7:30-8:30 a.m.
Other Important Notes:
1. Choral music folders for all grades (6-12) have been relocated to the event entrance in the High School building.
2. Students will only have access to lockers and the music room for instruments. No other classrooms will be opened.
3. The buildings may not be staffed during this time other than a custodian.
4. Please minimize interaction with other people during this time.
5. These times are subject to change if further direction is received from the Governor or Commissioner of Education.
Thank you for continuing to work with us to ensure students are prepared for distance learning beginning Monday, March 30th.
Spring Sports Update - March 26
We just received an update from the Minnesota State High School League (MSHSL) regarding Spring athletics and activities. Effective immediately and continuing until the governor of Minnesota has lifted his school closure declaration:
- All participation in MSHSL spring activities at all member schools is suspended.
- Participation includes, but is not limited to, competitions, training, practices, scrimmages, and contests.
No decisions regarding the cancellation of spring activities have been made at this time. The MSHSL has indicated their intent to be responsive to member schools and to keep future participation options open for the spring activity season. Additional information will be provided as it becomes available and as decisions are made.
We are grateful for your patience as we navigate the COVID-19 situation. There is no need to request a spring sports refund at this time. The previous deadline to request refunds by April 10 has been extended indefinitely. Once we have a better understanding about the spring sports season; we will give each participant one week to make a decision about whether to continue in spring sports or request a refund.
Thank you for your understanding!
Director of Athletics
The folllowing is the manuscript from the video recorded on March 25th by Spectrum's Excutive Director, Dan DeBruyn.
Good evening Spectrum Community,
My name is Dan DeBruyn and I have the distinct honor of serving as Spectrum’s Executive Director.
This communication comes on the heels of Governor Walz’ press conference this afternoon where he issued a “stay at home” executive order from March 27 through April 10.
In addition, the Commissioner of Education directed all schools to begin implementing distance learning next Monday, March 30th and continue through Thursday, April 30th. Staff would return to work on Friday, May 1st and Monday, May 4th in preparation for the students’ return to school on Tuesday, May 5th. The purpose of the Distance Learning Period, as stated by the Governor, is to provide continuity of education during the COVID-19 pandemic, while also preserving the health, safety, and lives of Minnesota’s students, educators, and the broader public. If these dates are extended for any reason, we will continue to keep you posted.
The Governor’s Executive Order also directs Spectrum (and all public schools) to continue providing free school-age care to school-enrolled students pre-k through age 12 for the children of critical workers, which includes educators providing school-age care, grocery workers, medical, and other emergency personnel. If you fall into one of these categories of workers and are in need of childcare during school hours, please contact our Volunteer Coordinator, Janice Dammeier.
Teachers and staff have been working diligently to ensure that we’re prepared to serve our students and families through distance learning beginning on Monday. Tomorrow evening, the school board will be reviewing and approving Spectrum’s distance learning plan, which we will post on the school website and send to all of our families and staff on Friday. We ask that you read through the plan, review student expectations with your child(ren), and let us know if you have any questions prior to Monday morning.
We recognize that the current circumstances are challenging and impact each of us differently. I want to thank you again for the way you support each other and our teachers and staff. Spectrum is an amazing community.
Please continue to stay safe and we will be in touch soon.
The folllowing is the transcript from the video recorded on March 27th by Spectrum's Excutive Director, Dan DeBruyn.
Good evening Spectrum Community,
My name is Dan DeBruyn and I am Spectrum’s Executive Director.
I’m connecting with you today for three reasons:
- To share Spectrum’s Distance Learning Plan that was approved by the Spectrum School Board last night.
- To share a handful of pointers that we would like to encourage families to consider in preparation for Monday and the kickoff of our distance learning program.
- To provide some encouragement as we venture into the world of distance learning together.
Spectrum’s administration and staff have been working incredibly hard to create a distance learning plan that is user-friendly, consistent, flexible, and provides quality teaching and learning. This plan was presented to the Spectrum school board at their meeting last night where the Board asked many pertinent questions and moved forward with approval - keeping in mind that the document and plan will be adapted as needs arise and feedback is sought by parents, students, and teachers. The Spectrum distance learning plan can be found on the school website under the new tab for distance learning. It will also be sent out by email to all families and staff by tomorrow morning. Parents are encouraged to review the student expectations with their children. We’ve also provided a user-friendly video explaining those expectations that we hope will be helpful to your students as they prepare for Monday morning.
Second, we want to provide a handful of pointers that we hope will be helpful for parents as you anticipate your students starting distance learning on Monday.
- As is good practice for students when completing homework, we encourage families to set up a specific location in your home where your children can be expected to work on their school work.
- In addition, it would be a good idea to establish some daily routines and discuss a schedule with expectations for school time. That schedule should include a conversation each night with your children about what they worked on and perhaps looking over their work together.
- Of course, you know your children best and locations, schedules, and the amount of accountability will vary greatly depending upon their age and their level of self-discipline.
- Another important consideration is to ensure your child has access to the internet at home. We recognize that internet access varies by community and speeds or data plans also vary. As all students across the state delve into distance learning on Monday, in addition to many parents working from home, we anticipate some glitches will happen. This is part of the reason we ensured that our distance learning plan allows for flexibility and most of the lessons are pre-recorded instead of being live streamed.
Lastly, we want to encourage parents, students, and teachers as we work together to make the best of the situation. While no one could have anticipated our current situation, we believe that, by working together, we can and will be successful. Please know that we do not expect parents to become teachers and we have tried to put the necessary supports in place to ensure your students success and ongoing connection with his or her teachers and other support staff. It’ll be important for grace to be extended from each of us.
Your feedback will be very important to us as we look to continually improve our distance learning model and plan. For this reason, we have provided a link on the Distance Learning page on our website for you to provide feedback and ask questions. This will be monitored daily and we will do our best to get back to you in a timely manner - including this weekend as we ramp up to Monday morning.
Our teachers are excited to reconnect with your students on Monday! Please continue to stay safe and let us know how we can help.
This email is a follow up to the video communication posted last night with updates on Spectrum's distance learning plan to begin on Monday morning.
Spectrum's website has also been updated with current information on COVID-19 and Spectrum's ongoing efforts to provide continuity in education for the students.
Spectrum teachers, administration, and staff want to express our appreciation for your support during this challenging time. We are confident that, by working together, our students will continue to be successful. We are looking forward to reconnecting with your students on Monday.
Please send us any feedback in the designate "Concern or Question" box on our website here. We will be monitoring beginning today and are here to assist.
The folllowing is an updated provided by Spectrum's Excutive Director, Dan DeBruyn. Watch the video here.
Good morning Spectrum Community,
My name is Dan DeBruyn and I have the honor of serving as Spectrum’s Executive Director.
I’m connecting with you today for three reasons:
- To share some insights as we’ve begun implementing Spectrum’s Distance Learning Plan this week;
- To highlight the importance of the social/emotional health of our students, families, and staff; and
- To make some announcements
As we kicked off distance learning this week, many teachers, staff, parents, and students were anxious and a number were also enthusiastic about this new adventure in teaching and learning. Students and teachers have been reconnecting after the two week school closure, which we’ve heard from many has been refreshing and helpful in bringing a little normalcy back to people’s lives.
Of course, there have been a number of challenges in implementing the plan. This is especially the case when those things are outside of our control - such as access to Schoology. Schoology’s a great platform and learning management system that’s served our school well for a number of years and has all of the tools necessary for successful distance learning. Unfortunately, with over 20 million users across the country, complications and access issues have come up. Schoology’s been working around the clock to address these concerns and has made some improvements. Updates from Schoology can be found here. Spectrum’s IT staff are incredibly talented and knowledgeable - working closely with Schoology to address issues as they arise. We are so grateful for people’s patience and the grace being extended as we work with them to address concerns.
Limited access to Schoology has brought questions to the forefront about assignment completion and attendance. We want to remind people that attendance is being kept in terms of work completion and check in points and not specific days or times during the week as long as things are completed by 3:00 p.m. on Friday. It has been recommended to consider having students work at non-peak times (such as 7-10 a.m. or after 2:00 p.m.) to gain better access. Please know that grace will continue to be extended to students for attendance and the timeliness of assignment completion as we work together to address access issues. Our teachers, and staff are happy to work with you, providing flexibility and grace, to help our students be successful.
We also continue to have families in need avail themselves of the opportunity to have lunches delivered from the school on a daily basis. If your student(s) are in need, please contact our Lunch Coordinator, Jennifer Russell by email at email@example.com.
The second area I want to highlight is the importance of maintaining positive mental health for students, parents, and our staff. In a time when there are many unknowns, it’s important that we monitor our own well being as well as the well being of our students. If there is a disruption to learning, we will work through that together when we return to school. Our teachers are trained at meeting the academic needs of students and differentiating as needed to help them be successful. In addition, our school counselors are available to talk with students about any mental health needs and/or work with parents to refer them to outside resources. We need to continue growing our grace as we work together. Each of us has challenges unique to our situations, our jobs, our families, and our friends. Many teachers are teaching students while also helping their own children through distance learning. Many parents are adapting to working from home while assisting their own children with school work or having their students at home while they’re at work. Some families are impacted by economic challenges to their careers. Children are trying to make sense of it all, while putting forth their best effort to do their part. We’re in this together!
Since the current executive order has schools extending distance learning through April 30th and returning to school on May 5th, Spectrum is determining which large events will need to be cancelled this spring. While we’re still holding out hope that some events will be able to continue in some fashion, there are a number of events that are necessary to cancel in advance. As those decisions are made, we’ll be updating the events on the Frequently Asked Questions portion on our website and noting them as “Cancelled” on the website calendar.
So far, the following items have been noted:
- Prom 2020, previously scheduled for Saturday, May 2nd, has been cancelled at this time
- The 6th-12th grade Band Concert, previously scheduled for Friday, May 1st, will not be happening on May 1st. Discussions are in progress about a possible alternative to this concert.
- The National Junior Honor Society and Nation Honor Society Induction Ceremony, previously scheduled for May 1st, will not be happening on May 1st. Discussions are in progress about a possible alternative.
- Spring Break, scheduled for April 9, 10, and 13) WILL continue as scheduled.
Your feedback is really valuable to us as we navigate distance learning and support each other through these challenging times. Please continue to utilize Help Desk and send your questions or concerns by using the buttons on the new Updates page on our website.
We care for and appreciate each of you and your families. Please stay safe and let us know how we can help!