The Minnesota Department of Education (MDE) has awarded the Richfield Public School District a grant worth nearly $94,000 over the next two years from the Grant to Increase Science, Technology, Engineering and Math Course Offerings. This competitive grant is designed to focus on expanding rigorous course offerings in STEM fields, specifically with College Board Advanced Placement (AP) courses.
The district will focus the use of these funds to create a pathway for student success in two AP Computer Science courses: AP Computer Science Principles and AP Computer Science in Java. Only 85 schools in Minnesota offered these AP Computer Science courses in 2016-2017 (the most recent data available), but computer science jobs are the number one source of all new wages in the United States, and we want our students ready!
The grant is structured in that the 2018-2019 school year will be a planning and preparation year for both the district and teachers and the 2019-2020 school year will be full implementation of a vertically aligned computer science pathway in grades 9-12. This will coincide with the renovations planned for Richfield High School that were made possible by the generous support of our Richfield community for the district referendum with regard to our capital bond project, which was passed in November 2017. The building will be 21st century-ready for our students to learn these important 21st-century skills.