During the 2017-18 school year, Richfield High School students created a legacy. Many of the programs, outcomes and activities that students experience today are the direct result of student input during an event called Reimagine Richfield. The one-day event was planned and implemented by students with the goal of improving the overall experience at Richfield High School.
Students were very clear on what they wanted—from nicer bathrooms and better lunches, to more rigorous courses and equity in access. We heard them and we changed. Their legacy lives on through facility updates, new courses and an improved lunch menu (among other things).
During Reimagine Richfield, the students spoke and we listened. And we continue to listen. With student representatives on the Safe and Supportive Schools Committee and on the Richfield School Board, every time we make decisions or set policy, we do it with the guidance and input of students and families. Their legacy lives on through these student representatives each year.
Improvements didn’t stop at the high school. We updated all of our facilities, made changes in our curriculum at all grade levels and worked to ensure that even our youngest learners could benefit from what we learned through Reimagine Richfield. When students in our elementary schools can see themselves and their culture reflected in their books, the lunch menu and the teaching staff around them, that is part of the legacy.
Students in the class of 2021 were freshmen when the event took place. We caught up with a few of them before they graduated in June and asked them about the experience—and what it means to them to know that this one-day event had such a lasting impact on the school and on the District. We also talked with some of the adults who were involved in coaching and supporting the students as they planned the event.
Please take a few minutes to learn more about the legacy of Reimagine Richfield and how it has helped to ensure that Richfield Public Schools are a great place to learn, grow and excel—for everyone.
Here is the complete list of outcomes from Reimagine Richfield that are shown at the end of the video.
- We doubled the number of advanced courses offered.
- Students of color enrolled in college credit classes increased from 30% to 65%.
- College credits earned by students went from 600 to 2,000 per year.
- An ACT Prep class was created, and there has been a consistent increase in ACT scores for all demographic groups.
- Graduation rates increased consistently year-over-year, culminating in 2020 when the graduation gap between white students and students of color was eliminated.
- Student meals were improved and options now include a daily salad bar and taco bar, as well as a wider variety of fresh fruits and vegetables.
- Building improvements were made, including improved restroom facilities and flexible learning spaces to support independent and small group learning.
- The weight room was updated, machines were replaced and the hours were expanded to accommodate all students, not just those participating in athletics.
- We elevated and centered student voice in all our planning and decision making.
- We added social and emotional programming and staff to every building.
- We reduced class sizes.
- We expanded one-to-one technology for students.
District Policy & Staff Training
- With student input, the following District policies were updated or created: Attendance Policy, Bullying and Harassment Policies, Discipline Policy with Levels, Dress Code Policy, Equity Policy, Family Engagement Policy, Gender Inclusion Policy and the Wellness Policy.
- We provided all District staff with racial equity training, including mandatory classes through Innocent Classroom, Learning for Justice and the Courageous Leadership Institute, with a focus on topics like conscious discipline, systemic racism and critical race theory