COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions

Be sure to follow @SHAPE_America, @MNSHAPE, & @MTM4PEatMDE on Twitter for the most current information

1. Can we share equipment? As long as we are disinfecting them between each class, and we are minimizing partners?

The Minnesota Department of Education has posted a document called Physical Education in the 2020-21 School Year: Recommendations and Resources that addresses equipment use and sanitation on pages 5 – 8. This document was developed utilizing the Minnesota State Learning Plan for 2020-21: A Localized, Data-Driven Approach, the 2020-21 Planning Guide for Schools from the Minnesota Department of Health and the Minnesota Department of Education’s 2020-21 Planning Guidance for Minnesota Public Schools. All of these resources contain crucial information that are foundational around the responsibilities of schools during the COVID-19 pandemic and contain relevant information physical educators should be aware of for the 2020-21 school year. The purpose of the MDE PE document was to identify pertinent foundational information in all of these documents that apply specifically to physical education. 

Additional helpful documents can be found on the SHAPE America website that includes the SHAPE America 2020-2021 School Reentry Considerations: K-12 Physical Education, Health Education and Physical Activity as the foundational tool.


2. How often should we be cleaning equipment?

Best practice is to clean equipment after every class if the same equipment is to be used in any other classes during the school day. We realize this may be time consuming, but all guidance documents address the need to disinfect between use if the equipment is shared.


3. Will you be doing the third workshop for Graduation Standards this spring? When will registration info be out?

Yes, COVID has definitely disrupted our 3 year in-person professional development implementation plan for the new physical education standards.

For now, our new plan is to go virtual with our professional development offerings and develop and post helpful resources for the 2020-21 school year. MDE is working with MNSHAPE and MNDAPE to provide physical educators key information in all the different learning scenarios.

Resources that are posted on the MDE COVID-19 website include:


MDE is currently building a COVID-19 website specific to healthy schools that will include health and safety, meal and snack programs, physical education and physical activity, social-emotional and mental health, and out of school time. It will also include helpful resources; but also have professional development opportunity courses. It is still under construction. Look for the launch through the MNSHAPE list serve in November.

MDE is also working with MNSHAPE to support seven months of quality professional development starting in November 2020. Stay tuned to the MNSHAPE website for more information.


4. Should students be allowed to participate in elementary PE with their mask off in an indoor setting for all activities? Our school says if they are doing more than walking their mask can come off. What about yoga or brain breaks? Can students share equipment if they sanitize in and out? Our school says we can pretty much have regular PE indoors and outside.

The Minnesota Department of Education has posted a document called Physical Education in the 2020-21 School Year: Recommendations and Resources that addresses equipment use and sanitation on pages 5 – 8. This document was developed utilizing the Minnesota State Learning Plan for 2020-21: A Localized, Data-Driven Approach, the 2020-21 Planning Guide for Schools from the Minnesota Department of Health and the Minnesota Department of Education’s 2020-21 Planning Guidance for Minnesota Public Schools. All of these resources contain crucial information that are foundational around the responsibilities of schools during the COVID-19 pandemic and contain relevant information physical educators should be aware of for the 2020-21 school year. The purpose of the MDE PE document was to identify pertinent foundational information in all of these documents that apply specifically to physical education. 

Additional helpful documents can be found on the SHAPE America website that includes the SHAPE America 2020-2021 School Reentry Considerations: K-12 Physical Education, Health Education and Physical Activity as the foundational tool.