Northern Lights Academy

Safe Learning Plan



As a condition of accepting the ESSER III award (FIN160 & FIN161), the NLA must develop, with community input, a Safe Return to In-Person Learning Plan and post it for public comment within 30 days of receiving the ESSER III award (June 21, 2021). The requirements for the ESSER III Safe Return to In-Person Learning Plan can be found in the Interim Final Rule and must describe how “[the LEA] will maintain the health and safety of students, educators, and other staff and the extent to which it has adopted policies, and a description of any such policies, on each of the following safety recommendations established by the CDC.” The Safe Return to In-Person Learning Plan must be reviewed regularly, at least every six months, and the LEA must seek additional public comment on revisions. LEAs must retain documentation of the plan development, plan review, public comment, and summary of public comment.

Please send any additional public comment to Barb Mackey, NLA Administrator, at


Access the Northern Lights Academy Safe Return to In-person Learning Plan (Summer 2021)


2020-2021 School Year COVID-19 Information

At the beginning of this past school year, the Northern Lights Academy Board approved a Safe Learning Plan HERE in order to educate students in the safest way possible, following MN Dept. of Education and MN Dept. of Health requirements and recommendations in 3 possible learning models.   As we moved through the school year, the NLA monitored health concerns and changed learning models accordingly.  Upon release of 2021-22 school year requirements and recommendations, our Safe Learning Plan will be updated accordingly.  


Access Northern Lights Academy current learning model through the MDE Safe Learning Model Dashboard

Past COVID-19 Information:
Right arrow Northern Lights Academy 2020-21 Safe Learning Plan (includes all 3 learning models) 

Right arrow NLA School Closure and Distance Learning Plan (updated May 5, 2020)

Right arrow Families First Coronavirus Response Act Employee Rights Poster

302 14th Street
Cloquet, MN 55720
fax: 218-878-3061

Barb Mackey x8000, Assistant Special Education Director (
Emily Brown x8004, Special Education Teacher (
Amelia Calverley x8006, Direct 878-3062, Special Education Teacher (
Morgan Warbalow x8005, Special Education Teacher (
Lisa Dalbec x8004, Social Worker (
Kristie Petersen x8001, Administrative Assistant (
Caleb Komarek x8003, EBD Teacher (

Mission Statement

The Northern Lights Academy (NLA) mission is to support children and youth with significant emotional and behavioral needs, as well as those with low incidence disabilities. We provide academic, social and functional skill development, and mental health services to students from the member school districts of The Northern Lights Special Education Cooperative.

Our goal is to foster learning, promote independence, cultivate social and behavior skills, work in partnerships with families, and support students to become successful learners in their least restrictive environment, as well as active, productive members of our communities.

2021-22 School Year Information

For the 2021-22 school year, the NLA will offer Setting 4 Special Education programs for up to 34 students in grades K-8, who need an alternative educational placement. Contact your school's principal for more information.

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