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Milwaukee Public Schools Updates

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May 16, 2021

Dear MPS Community,

We've all had a busy year full of changes, but the close of the school year is now in sight! I want to thank our students, families, and staff for their patience, questions, communications, and hard work during this unusual school year. I want to update everyone about some important recent developments and upcoming events. 

This past week we learned about updated guidance related to COVID-19. 

Youth are now eligible for the Pfizer vaccine based on guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). In collaboration with the Milwaukee Health Department, we are excited to host clinics in five MPS locations to offer the vaccine starting Monday, May 17! The MPS clinics will be open to individuals as young as age 12-years-old. Please see the MPS COVID-19 Vaccine Clinics flyer for dates, times, locations, and please share widely with your family and friends!

MPS is aware of the new guidance the CDC recently issued regarding face masks for fully vaccinated people. At this time, face masks are still required at all MPS sites in addition to strategies such as proper hygiene, physical distancing, and frequent disinfecting. 

Contact tracing is a process to prevent further transmission of COVID-19 by identifying, informing, and monitoring others who have been exposed and potentially infected so they can take the appropriate steps not to spread the virus. The Milwaukee Health Department is conducting monitoring for confirmed positive student cases. If a student is identified as a close contact with an individual with COVID-19, the school leader sends the close contact letter to the student and their family with instructions for monitoring symptoms, testing, and how to keep others in the home from getting sick. The Milwaukee Health Department also monitors students identified as close contacts from a list provided by the school nurse.

The surveillance testing for students and school staff further enhances the district's ability to provide a safe environment for in-person learning. A student's participation in pool testing is a family's decision, and testing will not occur without consent given by the parent/guardian. The sample collected by the self-administered swab test is strictly to help determine if positive COVID-19 cases exist in our schools. In the event of a positive pool, individuals will be instructed to quarantine and individually test to confirm the positive case. 

The district is delighted to have our student-athletes back in action. Spring sports are in full swing and have gotten off to a good start, with a total of 560 student-athletes competing in conference and non-conference competitions. Be sure to check out our "Athlete of the Week," as we recognize a student-athlete who shined during the previous week of competition. All honorees can be found on the Milwaukee City Conference Facebook page

I am excited to congratulate our Class of 2021! Our high school seniors have persevered and succeeded, and we look forward to honoring our graduates June 1 to 4, 2021, at the UWM Panther Arena and North Division Auditorium. Details and schedules can be found at mpsmke.com/graduation, and families will receive specific information from their child's school. High schools are also planning celebrations to honor our graduates.

For graduates who are still making their plans for next fall, be sure to fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). This form will provide information about college financial aid available to you. You may be eligible for grants or loans to attend college or technical school. Make sure the FAFSA information is part of your decision!

Students should plan to attend Summer Academy this year for exciting educational programming! MPS has summer programs for students in K5 through grade 12. This is an excellent opportunity to catch up, get ahead, and have some fun. Talk to your child's school teacher and learn more at mpsmke.com/summeracademy.

My sincere hope is that the coming school year will look and feel more like a regular school year, with activities returning for our young people. Please continue to follow COVID-19 health and safety guidelines so our students can have the school experience they deserve. By working together, we can ensure a bright future for our children.

Please know that you are all appreciated! Let's continue to show appreciation for one another. 

Sincerely,

Dr. Polsey's Signature

Keith P. Posley
Superintendent of Schools

Office of the Superintendent

Dr. Posley

Dr. Keith P. Posley is Superintendent of Milwaukee Public Schools. 

As Superintendent, Dr. Posley works with the Milwaukee Board of School Directors and district leadership to improve student achievement; engage in effective and efficient operations that make best use of district resources; and, develop opportunities to increase parental and community involvement.

© Milwaukee Public Schools 2021
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