MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Minneapolis and St. Paul’s public school districts return from spring break to a new kind of classroom. Two of Minnesota’s largest districts will follow the rest of the state in launching distance learning.

However unlike some districts, not every student in every class has the appropriate device, district-issued tablets or otherwise. Minneapolis Public School officials have spent part of the past week surveying families to better understand the technology gaps and what the district can do to bridge it.

MPS aims to get tablets in the homes of every student who needs one, but in the interim will deliver paper packets that those students can complete by hand.

Timing can be tricky too, with less predictable family and child care schedules than normal. MPS does not expect students to follow the same structure they have during a normal school day.

Teachers have emailed their classes explaining the hours they’re available to help with assignments. Parents are also encouraged to keep an open dialogue should they have questions.

MPS is also offering free meals to children in need. They do not have to go to school in Minneapolis to be eligible. Click here for more information.

Christiane Cordero