New schools receive over $200,000 in state art grants
The Richland School District’s four new elementary schools have been awarded Washington State Arts Commission grants to purchase commissioned artwork. The Art in Public Places program will enable Sacajawea, Marcus Whitman, Lewis & Clark, and Orchard Elementary Schools to commission original art pieces which will be displayed on the respective campuses. Each school submitted a grant request earlier this fall and was notified recently of the grant amounts:
- Sacajawea - $65,000
- Marcus Whitman - $60,000
- Lewis & Clark - $55,000
- Orchard - $55,000
Monty Bowen leads the CPR and AED certification trainings for hundred of RSD employees
In the past four years, Richland School District employees have saved the lives of two students by administering CPR and AED (automated external defibrillator) shock. Those are two very good reasons why the District makes sure 600 employees receive current training and certification in CPR and AED. “You never know when a life threatening emergency will happen on one of our campuses,” stated Monty Bowen, Enterprise Middle School health/P.E. teacher and a certified Basic Life Support instructor for the American Heart Association.
A razor-thin margin between two candidates vying for a seat on the Richland School Board means the election is likely headed to a mandatory recount. Jill Oldson is leading Brett Amidan by four votes....6,159 to 6,155. Mandatory manual recounts are required under state rules where there is less than a quarter of 1 percent and less than 150 votes separating between two candidates. Benton County election officials said the need for a recount isn’t official yet as another tally of ballots will be made Monday ahead of the official certification of the results on Tuesday the 24th.
Energy efficiency efforts paying off for RSD taxpayers (KVEW-TV)
The Richland School District is focused on making sure all newly constructed schools, like the four new schools which opened in August, are energy efficient. These focused efforts are paying off as utility expenses are reduced and the District earns energy savings rebate checks from the City of Richland and the Benton Rural Electrical Association....$200,000 in rebates just this year alone. Learn more in this KVEW-TV news story.
Richland School District students could soon be able to check out laptops and other technology to use at home as the District transitions to more digital resources. District officials recently emailed 10,000 parents and guardians to gauge their interest in having their kids check out Google Chromebooks that are being distributed to schools. RSD is in the second year of a five-year plan to deploy 1,000 Chromebooks each year, having spent about $775,000 on the program so far. The technology initiative has raised some concerns, especially from secondary teachers who have asked about how to ensure all students will have access.
A Richland School Board race remains tight after the first Benton County election results in a week were released Friday afternoon. Jill Oldson leads Brett Amidan by seven votes, with 6,153 votes for Oldson, or 50.03 percent, to 6,146 votes for Amidan, or 49.97 percent. The race has tightened since election night, when Oldson was ahead by 154 votes.
The Washington Music Educators Association has announced that 40 Richland School District students have been selected to perform in the 2015-16 All-State Bands, Orchestras and Choirs. "Congratulations to all of these outstanding musicians for earning All-State honors and being recognized for their dedication and effort," said Superintendent Rick Schulte.
Interactive exhibits draw big crowd to Science Night (photo gallery)
Bomb detecting robot - Richland Police
Hundreds of students, parents, and community members learned more about STEM at the Chief Joseph Middle School Science Night on Thursday. The big crowd had opportunities to interact with a wide variety of science, technology, and engineering exhibits including a Richland Police bomb detecting robot, a City of Richland electric power display, LIGO, robotics, and health infomatics from Tri-Tech Skills Center. "We thank all of our community exhibitors for making this event a success," said Laura Robertson, Chief Joseph science teacher.
Richland School Board President Phyllis Strickler was trailing challenger Gordon Comfort by about 200 votes in the initial results released in Tuesday’s election. Jill Oldson and Brett Amidan were in a tight battle for an open seat on the board. Meanwhile, incumbent board member Rick Donahoe had a healthy lead over challenger Ron Higgins. The Benton County Auditor's office will be counting more ballots this week. You can check for updated results at the Auditor's election web page.
RHS freshman Cole Rigby uses his cell phone to scan a QR code and learn more about North Korea
Students in Theresa Buczek’s World Geography classes at Richland High became tech savvy as they researched the government, culture, and economy of nations for their East Asia museum. Students accessed RSD student email and Google Drive for creating documents to share with their group. Google Drive utilizes an “Auto Save” feature so student work is continuously updated and saved.
“Auto Save is a real benefit when students are collaborating with others on documents in real time simultaneously,” says Mike Leseberg, Executive Director of Information Technology.
The Richland School District is in the process of transitioning from a seven year textbook adoption cycle to a flexible renewal cycle that can be adjusted annually based on student achievement and teacher observations of data. “The flexible renewal cycle means we can address the needs of students and make curriculum adjustments in a timely manner,” says Erika Doyle, Curriculum Coordinator.
Fifth grade students at Badger Mountain Elementary demonstrated their knowledge of famous people who have made a difference in American history when they participated in Night of the Notables. Students were dressed up as various historical figures including Benjamin Franklin, Abraham Lincoln, Daniel Boone, and Clara Barton. The fifth graders had been studying and researching for weeks. During the unit, students used a number of academic skills including reading, writing, and organizing information.