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St Paul (KROC AM News) - Besides homework, Minnesota school kids may be facing another requirement during the upcoming school year.

Because of the current level of community spread of covid cases, federal and state health officials are recommending “all unvaccinated school-age children and school staff get tested for COVID-19 at least weekly throughout the school year. Unvaccinated children involved in extracurricular activities or sports should be tested more frequently. “

(Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)

Minnesota schools will now have a variety of testing options available to develop testing programs to keep kids and staff healthy, safe, and in their classrooms.

Rochester Public Schools is seeking public input on the draft version of its Safe and Open Schools Plan. 

Here is the section on vaccination status:

RPS will develop a confidential and optional process through which staff, volunteers and community service providers will be asked to report and verify their vaccine status. RPS will also develop a confidential and optional process through which parents and guardians will be asked to report and verify the vaccine status of their children. The information we gain through this process will enable us to adjust the mask requirement and other elements of our policy based upon actual vaccination rates in RPS schools rather than rates across Olmsted County as a whole.

The Minnesota Dept. of Education will also provide grants to support testing efforts in schools.

“We must use every available tool to keep our students in classrooms because we know that is best for their well-being and academic success,” said MDE Commissioner Dr. Heather Mueller. “We stand ready to partner with and support our school leaders across the state as they develop local COVID-19 testing plans that keep our students, staff, and families healthy and safe.”

News update:   Masks now required in Rochester Public Schools buildings.

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