SAM AI 2020 Instructional Leadership Summit Day 2 - Session 4


Session 4  10:45 - 11:45 AM 


Lessons Learned from Positive Coronavirus Cases in the School Setting - Hannah Nieskens 

Following this session, click on the link below to complete the survey and receive OPI Renewal Unit Credits for this session.


Recording of Live Session



SESSION OVERVIEW:  The week of July 4, 3 students in the Whitehall School District's  21st Century Summer School Program became infected with COVID-19. They attended summer school Monday - Thursday, not knowing they were ill. COVID-19 tests on Friday indicated their positive infection status. The resulting county health department response placed 29 students and 6 staff members in quarantine. From this experience, Whitehall administration learned how the county health department will handle school infection instances, what precautions affect quarantine status, and what precautions seemed to work in this instance to prevent virus transmission. These topics will be shared in this session.



Hannah Nieskens is the Superintendent of Whitehall School District. She moved to that
position this year after four years as the Whitehall 6-12 principal. Hannah has been an
educator for 20 years with experience as a teacher, Dean of Students, Elementary Principal,
and Middle/High School Principal. When Hannah became principal of Whitehall
High School, the school was ranked 99th of 166 high schools in the state, as measured by
ACT scores. Within two years, WHS improved its ranking to 6th in the state. In the middle
school, students scoring proficient and advanced on the SBAC in math increased 31 percent
in three years. In reading, the increase was 45 percent. The amount of F’s issued by teachers
decreased by 63 percent, and office discipline referrals decreased by 84 percent. Hannah
believes the key to this success is to ensure every learner has the proper support while making learning gains. Hannah has earned numerous degrees including B.S. Elementary Education, M.Ed. Technology in Education, M.Ed. PK-12 School Administration, and E. Juris Doctor. Hannah was recognized as 2018 Montana Principal of the Year and was one of three finalists for 2019 NASSP Principal of the Year.