The Minneapolis school board voted 5-4 Tuesday to begin negotiations to extend Superintendent Ed Graff's contract, which is set to expire at the end of June.

Board members Adriana Cerrillo, Sharon El-Amin, Siad Ali and Josh Pauly voted against the move.

The vote came a week after board members met in a closed meeting to evaluate Graff's leadership across standards of literacy, district finances, human resources and student supports. Board members determined that Graff's effectiveness on literacy was "developing" and he was an "effective" leader in two other areas, said board chair Kim Ellison. The board rated him "highly effective" in the student support category.

"The board recognizes that this time period was one of the most challenging periods for education in modern history," Ellison said.

Under Graff's leadership, the district underwent a massive redistricting that redrew attendance boundary lines and sent thousands of students to new schools this fall. The controversial plan aims to redistribute resources more equitably across the city's schools.

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought added difficulties for the district, which faces declining enrollment, staffing shortages and persistent disparities between white students and students of color.

Graff's current contract, which went into effect in July 2019, pays him $230,000 annually. He was hired in 2016 after two unsuccessful superintendent searches.

District leaders also announced Tuesday a plan to reduce the district's 14-day quarantine requirement to 10 days for students who were in close contact with someone who is COVID-19 positive in school. Board members also discussed authorizing a regular COVID-19 testing requirement for unvaccinated high school athletes in the district — a resolution that will be up for a vote at the next meeting.

Mara Klecker • 612-673-4440