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Child care and meals information during closure

*Updated March 31, 2020

In response to an executive order from Gov. Walz regarding the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), District 196 has closed all schools until at least May 4. 


According to the school closure guidance received from Minnesota Department of Education, all children 18 and under are eligible to receive free meals. 

Beginning March 30, breakfast and lunch bags can be picked up at Cedar Park Elementary, Dakota Ridge, Echo Park Elementary, Oak Ridge Elementary and Thomas Lake Elementary from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., Monday-Friday. 

We will also have five-day meal kits available for drop-off on Monday mornings at convenient neighborhood locations. These kits contain five breakfasts and five lunches. View the list of neighborhood sites.

To receive free meals, complete the survey. Families only need to sign up once.


Essential workers (as defined by the state) can receive free emergency child care for children in grades K-5., from 9 a.m.-3 p.m., each school day at Cedar Park Elementary School of STEM in Apple Valley, Oak Ridge Elementary School of Leadership, Environmental and Health Sciences and Thomas Lake Elementary School in Eagan.

Transportation to and from those sites is available, and children will be provided breakfast and lunch each day.

District staff will be providing the care in self-contained classrooms with a ratio of 1:7 in order to practice social distancing. Children will be screened upon arriving for fever, headache and cough. Any children with those symptoms will be sent home.

Special education, nursing and mental health supports will be on site for the six hours, and possibly longer, each day.

Register for free child care by visiting this link.

Note: You will be placed on a waitlist when registering in order for us to confirm qualification and to place your child in an appropriate classroom. You will receive a confirmation when placed.


Fee-based, extended-day care is being offered through the YMCA, from 6-9 a.m. and 3-6 p.m. each day, at Cedar Park, Oak Ridge and Thomas Lake elementary schools, for the children of essential workers only. Transportation is not available for this extended care time.

Parents and guardians will need to pick up and drop off their child each day. The fee for extended care is $12.55 for each morning session and $12.55 for each afternoon session. Parents need to register separately with the YMCA for the extended-day care.

Register for fee-based, extended-day care by visiting this link.

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