Details on magnet schools to be unveiled in December

2018 workshop at Jefferson Community School
A 2018 workshop at Jefferson Community School in Lowry Hill East, which will become a magnet school next fall. Information on Minneapolis’ new magnet schools will be released Dec. 5. File photo

Details will soon be available about the new elementary and middle school magnet schools set to open next fall under the Comprehensive District Design (CDD) restructuring plan.

Minneapolis Public Schools (MPS) will unveil the information at a virtual event slated for 10 a.m. on Dec. 5.

That includes information on the new “global studies and humanities” school for students in grades K-8 who will be located at what’s now Jefferson Community School in the Lowry Hill East neighborhood.

Information about the district’s new ethnic studies graduation requirement, its revamped enrollment website and its academic and special education programs will also be presented on Dec. 5. That’s also the first day that families will be able to choose a school for next year.

MPS currently has 12 magnet schools serving elementary students, middle-schoolers or both. The magnet schools, which have specialized academic programs and offer busing to wider swaths of the city than typical community schools, are aimed at increasing racial and socioeconomic integration.

Under the CDD next fall, magnet schools will be located at buildings in the city’s geographic center in an attempt to make access more equitable for students across Minneapolis. Currently, more magnet schools are located in South Minneapolis than in North and Northeast Minneapolis.

The CDD also changes the district’s magnet offerings, creating two new arts schools, three schools focused on science, technology, engineering, arts and math (STEM/STEAM) and one school in Lowry Hill East focused on global studies and humanities.

There will no longer be magnet schools focused on environmental education or the “open” educational philosophy, though the district will still have Montessori and Spanish dual-language magnet schools.

The district plans to record the Dec. 5 kickoff event for families who are unable to view it live. Additionally, individual schools will hold open houses between Dec. 7 and Jan. 30, which will include more information on the new programs. (Visit the individual school websites for more details.)

School request forms will become available Dec. 5 and will be due Feb. 7. Only families of upcoming preschool, kindergarten, sixth- or ninth-grade students are required to submit a choice card, though families wanting to switch schools or attend a school outside their atten- dance zone must also submit a card.

Because of the boundary changes approved as part of the CDD, some families are now located in new attendance zones and will be assigned to a new school. To look up whether your family has a new attendance zone for next year, visit tinyurl.com/mplscdd2020.

The district’s school-request website is schoolrequest.mpls.k12.mn.us.