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Revisiting Reimagine Richfield

Revisiting Reimagine Richfield

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 Life

  • 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.

Student Support

  • 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

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Joe Carr is a 2021 graduate of Richfield High School and a current student in our Transition Plus program. You might recognize Joe from his annual lemonade stand, which raises money for Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare. 

A group photo of our 2023 Wallin Scholars.

We are thrilled that ten Richfield High School students are Wallin Scholars, each receiving up to $16,000 over four years, as well as college advising and access to ongoing support.

Graduation Caps

The Minnesota Department of Education released the 2022 graduation rates. We are excited to share that we have made consistent gains in many areas and that Richfield High School’s four-year graduation rate (88.9%) exceeds the statewide graduation rate of 83.6% by 5.3 percentage points. 

Students voting for which book to read

Kirsten Thorson’s preschool classroom at the Central Education Center provides students as young as 3 years old with an opportunity to have their voices heard by engaging them in their education.

Representation Matters in ECFE

Shanyn Hill, an ECFE teacher at the Central Education Center, recently had the dolls in her classroom measured to make hijabs. This little step is representative of the commitment that our early learning program has to our District's equity policy.

Solar at Richfield Public Schools

We are thrilled to share that we have made significant progress in our commitment to clean energy. Over the past decade, we've added 1.15 megawatts of solar across five of our schools, making us a shining example of rooftop solar for school districts.

A teacher at Centennial is interviewed for the evening news.

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