spotlight wire
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4,683 cases, 8 more than yesterday, for Morrison County as of 11 a.m., Friday, Sept. 17, 2021. Data is pulled at 4 a.m. the previous weekday, according to the Minnesota Department of Health. Data is no longer updated on weekends by the MDH.

At the first Orono School Board meeting of the new school year, the board and district administrators outlined its Safe Return to School plan.

Normally a placid affair, the Westonka school board on Aug. 16 gave over some 45 minutes—the majority of its hour-long session—to addressing concerns about the district’s pandemic response and its Cultural Competency Plan.

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Students in much of Anoka County won’t be required to wear face coverings in school buildings this fall, even though universal masking in schools is recommended by the Minnesota Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

With just under a month to go before classes resume Sept. 7, Westonka Schools announced it will not require face masks to be worn inside school buildings, and it will not require proof of vaccination from either students or staff.

Mere hours after wrapping up the 2021 Minnesota Legislative Session in the wee hours of the morning, Thursday, area legislators were in Little Falls for a post-session update hosted by the Little Falls Area Chamber of Commerce.

With the state Legislature in special session and school district enrollment numbers typically not firmed up until the fall, Westonka school leaders still found themselves on more stable ground than they had last year when preparing the budget: all signs have been pointing to a more normal y…

With COVID-19 cases down and restrictions being lifted, the Orono school district has updated its health and safety guidelines for summer programming and childcare.


Another sign of the return to normalcy: the city of Mound last Tuesday lifted its peacetime emergency, dropped the mask requirement for employees not face-to-face with the public and, heralding a summer once again full of waterfront activity, allowed rentals of its popular Depot at Surfside …

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As we move closer to the end of the pandemic, Isanti County Public Health continues to provide COVID-19 vaccines. Isanti County Public Health administered their first COVID-19 vaccines in January, and has since given over 11,000 COVID-19 vaccines. In an average year, ICPH usually gives aroun…