Return To School Planning


With the start of the 2020-21 school year approaching, Richland School District is building the road to reopen schools safely in the midst of continuing challenges posed by COVID-19 in our community.

RSD Return To School Documents

See detailed updates as we work to bring students into classrooms for in-person learning.

View Updates


Our Starting Point

Teaching, engaging and inspiring students in our schools this fall is our ultimate goal. Doing so in the time of COVID-19 will require careful planning and preparation. We also must acknowledge that factors beyond local control may impact our plans. Our reopening may not resemble that of other school districts across the state or even in our region as our county may still be in a more restrictive phase of the state’s Safe Start plan. We may have to close our buildings again if the risk from COVID-19 resurges.

The district is using the Return To School Roadmap to begin framing the questions, challenges and considerations surrounding reopening schools as our community continues to see impacts from COVID-19. The Roadmap covers multiple areas including decision-making, public health, mental health, instruction, post-secondary success, technology and school operations and facilities.

Learn More About The Return To School Roadmap

District leaders also are closely monitoring decisions from Gov. Jay Inslee’s office and state Superintendent Chris Reykdal, as well as recommendations from federal, state and local health officials. We seek to follow their guidance when it comes to keeping our students, staff and community safe while providing the high-quality education expected from our schools.


Our Process

Developing a plan to reopen our schools requires collaboration with our community. We are also faced with making a decision on how to reopen in a very short timeframe with an initial draft plan being available on June 30. Here is how we will take input and use it to inform and shape how we move toward this fall.

Stakeholder Input

Responses to surveys we have collected from parents, teachers and students in regard to At-Home Learning have provided a wealth of feedback on what has and has not worked since we closed our buildings on March 13. We have also sought input on online learning management systems, access to technology and other issues.

Working Groups

Teams of district and school leaders, teachers and other school staff as well as community members are working to identify challenges facing different aspects of reopening our schools and consider potential solutions informed by stakeholder input and current community conditions related to COVID-19. Those potential solutions are then provided to the district’s Return To School Committee to craft recommendations

Return To School Committee

The committee is made up of district and school administrators tasked with reviewing all the community input as well as the potential solutions proposed by working groups. These will be crafted into a set of recommendations that aim to reopen our schools safely, equitably and efficiently while being prepared for changing circumstances.

Richland School Board

The Board will consider the recommendations presented by the Return To School Committee and determine whether to adopt them.

Stay Up To Date On District News

We want to make sure everyone can give us input on how to reopen our schools and knows when we start taking the next steps.

  • Parents of RSD students: make sure your contact email is up-to-date by contacting your child’s school to verify it.
  • Community members: Sign Up For Email Updates.