News & Announcements

Terah Ochoa and family

Terah Ochoa is described as the heart and soul of River’s Edge High School. She consistently fosters a positive and inclusive environment where all students can thrive, one of the many reasons she is being honored as Richland School District’s Classified School Employee of the Year for 2024.

Read More about Longtime RSD Administrative Assistant Named District's Classified School Employee of the Year
Advaitha Motkuri

RSD is thrilled to announce that Advaitha Motkuri, a junior at Richland High School, was named a 2024 Washington State delegate to the American Junior Academy of Science (AJAS). Advaitha is one of eleven students, Washington State Academy of Sciences’ largest delegation ever, were selected based on original STEM research they conducted while in high school.

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Two Chief Joseph Middle School teachers are using food-focused activities to inspire students when it comes to science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education.

Elizabeth Crider and Callie Graff each received $1,000 from the Dream Builder’s Education Foundation as part of its STEM Like ME! classroom grant program. The program supports pioneering educators wanting to enact their best ideas for providing students with rich and robust learning experiences. 

Read More about Chief Joseph Students Benefit From STEM Like ME! Classroom Grants
Kayla Barron

Students had a lot of questions for Lieutentant Commander Kayla Barron when the NASA astronaut returned to her hometown this past week. Whether answering those questions, showing students the work she engaged in on the International Space Station or working with a few on a space exploration-themed project, her message to students was to push themselves toward their goals.

Read More about NASA Astronaut Kayla Barron Returns To Richland To Engage & Inspire Students

The school was awarded a 2022 Partnership School Award from the National Network of Partnership Schools (NNPS) at Johns Hopkins University. This is the fourth time in six years the school’s Action Team for Partnership (ATP) was applauded by the national network for its work, with the organization specifically praising how the school’s efforts sought to address the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on students.

Read More about Orchard Elementary Receives National Award For Connecting Community
Derek O'Konek

As Executive Director of Elementary Teaching, Learning & Curriculum, Derek O’Konek will join Zachery Carpenter, Executive Director of Elementary Special Education, on a team led by Brian Moore, Assistant Superintendent for Elementary Education, focused on the needs of elementary schools and early learning programs.

Read More about Former RSD Elementary Principal Rejoins RSD To Assist Elementary Curriculum & Instruction Efforts
Mike Johnson

Mike Johnson, currently principal at Delta High School in Pasco, replaces Principal Tory Christensen, who will be a Principal on Special Assignment supporting all RSD secondary schools during the 2022-23 school year. District leaders say Mr. Johnson’s plethora of academic and leadership experience, deep ties to the RSD community and record in educational innovation make him a perfect fit to lead the Falcons.

Read More about Accomplished Administrator & Educator Returns To RSD To Lead Hanford High School

Public meetings of the Richland School Board are when RSD’s stakeholders may see firsthand the business of the district. The Board has also made these meetings an opportunity for the community to share their joys, concerns and feedback on the Board, the district, and its schools. The district has policies, practices and protections in place to ensure Board meetings are productive, constructive and focused on the needs of students.

Read More about RSD Board Meeting Reminders

Many parents struggle with how to support their children through a mental health crisis. That’s why three parents teamed up with RSD leaders and experts from the University of Washington to start the conversation and provide support through the Asking Is Caring program. Initial parent trainings start in May.

Read More about RSD Teams Up With Parents, University Of Washington To Help Families Address Mental Health At Home

Congratulations to counselor Denise Reddinger for being named School Counselor of the Year at the recent conference of the Washington School Counselor Association (WSCA) for her outstanding work with students! In addition, Assistant Principal Jerry Riggs was awarded the WSCA’s School Counseling Administrator/Supervisor of the Year award for his support of the school’s counselor team.

Read More about Richland High Counselor, Assistant Principal Earn State Awards
Classified Staff Appreciation 2022

RSD is celebrating Classified Staff Appreciation Week March 7-11! Our classified staff — nutrition services, custodians, secretaries, paraeducators, bus drivers, maintenance and grounds crews, IT and all other support staff — ensure our schools have the resources and support needed to make each day count for kids. If you see them around our schools, be sure to thank them for all they do!

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New Elementary Attendance Boundaries For 2022-23

RSD is moving forward with preparations to open Elementary #11 with its own school community at the start of the 2022-23 school year. This will directly impact students, families and staff at five of the district’s elementary schools—Badger Mountain, Orchard, Tapteal, White Bluffs and William Wiley—and district leaders want everyone to know what to expect through the transition.

Read More about What Families Need To Know About The New Elementary Boundaries
Richland High Senior Brevin Wickham works on a planter as part of his Work-Based Learning experience with RSD grounds staff.

Richland High School senior Brevin Wickham one of more than 70 high school students participating in the district’s Work-Based Learning offerings. There are opportunities for students of any ability level and interest, whether students just want something different from a classroom experience or want to intentionally prepare for a specific future career.

Read More about Students Developing Skills For Their Future With Work-Based Learning
Thank You Classified Staff

Our classified staff are often the first to greet our students each morning and the last to wave goodbye each afternoon. They keep our schools and grounds safe and clean. They help students learn by supporting technology, providing meals and encouraging them. Our schools would not be the same without them. Join us in thanking all of them as we celebrate Classified Staff Appreciation Week 2021.

Read More about Classified Staff Appreciation Week 2021

Certificated Staff Appreciation Week is May 4-8 and usually involves students and families thanking them with small handmade cards or a tasty treats, not to mention numerous hugs and high fives. While this year's festivities need to be a little different, we still have a deep desire to thank those staff for everything they have done and are doing to support and inspire kids.

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Tracy Blankenship, currently a director in the district's special education department and with more than 20 years of special education experience, will become executive director beginning March 1. Blankenship’s position will be filled by Zac Carpenter, who was recently hired to be a special education coordinator providing support to the Early Learning Center (ELC) and the district’s student behavior efforts.

Read More about Leadership Changes Coming To Special Education
Certificated Staff Appreciation Week 2019

They guide our students in the classroom, help them find the perfect book and are there for them when they are hurt or need someone to talk to.

Our certificated staff—teachers, nurses, counselors, psychologists, librarians and others—are always there for our students. May 6-10 is Certificated Staff Appreciation Week. Join us in thanking them for everything they do to make our schools great.

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Hanford High School freshman Nikhita Bontha

Nikhita Bontha is really interested in the footprint people are leaving on the planet. More specifically, the Hanford High School freshman wants to make that footprint as small as possible, so she conducted research on how to make fuel cells more efficient and available. 

Now that research has earned her gold at the recent Washington State Science & Engineering Fair (WSSEF).

Read More about Hanford Freshman Wins Top Award At Washington State Science & Engineering Fair