“What I need” offers students a variety of new opportunities
A new program at Richfield High School gives high school students time to focus on their needs, whether academic, emotional or extracurricular.
Presented by administrators at the October 4 school board meeting, What I Need, or WIN, is designed to provide students with a number of ways to broaden their horizons and engage in learning that doesn’t. part of the regular study program. The program offers flexible learning time each Wednesday where students, in addition to catching up with their regular classes, have the opportunity to participate in a wide variety of options and clubs.
Director Stacy Theien-Collins, Deputy Director Carrie Vala, Deputy Director Steven Flucas and Director of Activities Jared Ellerson presented the program to the Board.
In a written report, district officials further defined the program: âWIN timeâ¦ is an innovative new part of the student schedule at Richfield High School. It offers students dedicated time each week to receive individualized academic help, socio-emotional support or participate in intramural activities, clubs and sports. Students can use this time to work with teachers on homework assignments, participate in enrichment activities, work with staff at our career center and college center, or meet with counselors and affinity groups.
âWIN time provides time for these activities during the day, as not all students are able to participate in activities or receive this level of support outside of the school day. The HRH team thinks this is especially important as everyone comes back after a year of social isolation. “
WIN is linked to the district’s inclusion and equity goals. This journey is now guided by a newly developed vision of fairness, which reads:
âAt Richfield High School, we believe in the importance of providing a rigorous and equitable education that reflects the strengths and experiences of our community. We believe that students learn best when they feel secure and assertive in who they are. Therefore, we are committed to dismantling the policies and processes that benefit whiteness and other privilege systems â,
The WIN initiative was implemented when students returned to face-to-face classes last April.
School staff and administrators said they learned during the pandemic that listening to the wants and needs of all students would go a long way in their success.
Student options for WIN include stress relief activities such as walks, puzzles, crafts, and even coloring.
Students can also participate in table games, learn about career and college preparation options, participate in open gymnasiums, media center activities, and an array of clubs.
Council hears more presentations
In addition to hearing about programming from WIN, the board received updates on other programming news.
Nate Edwards has been hired as the new theater manager and hiring is underway for competitive dance, baseball and girls’ track and field.
Middle school intramural classes are also starting soon, giving students the opportunity to participate in dodge ball, floor hockey, indoor soccer and chess.
Another new offer, e-sport, is under development.
Presentation of student representatives
Student representatives selected for inclusion on the school board this year attended their first meeting on October 4.
â¢ Tyler Jake, a senior who served on the board last year but never had the opportunity to attend a meeting in person due to the pandemic
â¢ Elsy Cruz Parra, junior
â¢ Helen Dombrock, an elderly person
â¢ Corrina Jones, senior
Jake said he decided to continue as a student representative on the board because he felt honored that the board members listened to him. “I hope to learn how things are going here and I will respectfully make my contribution,” he said.
Parra said she had volunteered to serve on the board of trustees “to bring student input into student choices, values, beliefs and perspectives of students for individual and groups of students” .
Dombrock said: âI really see myself as an advocate for others. I am adept at raising the voices around me. … I would like the emphasis to be on finding intrinsic motivation in students and on their willingness to learn.
Jones said: “What I would like to do is stand up for students who might not be able to use their voice, hoping to be that voice for them and present their wants and needs and to see changes in Richfield Public Schools. “
Council members welcomed the student representatives and each said they looked forward to the views of the student representatives.
âWe want you to feel like you can say what you think without holding back,â said Crystal Brakke, director of the board. âPlease let us know things that will help you feel more comfortable. I am so excited to learn from you, âshe added.
Principal Peter Toensing added that student feedback is âthe most important data we see. Having you here makes it real.
Participation in fall sports
A brief discussion took place on the number of students participating in the traditional fall sports offered in high school.
Although the number of students is fairly consistent with that of the past two years, most sports are down slightly from previous years.
Here’s a breakdown of those numbers in high school:
â¢ Cross-country skiing has a total of 40 participants, compared to 44 in 2020 and 42 in 2019.
â¢ Football participation is 63 against 54 in 2020, but down from 74 in 2019.
â¢ The boys’ soccer program has 65 participants, up from 67 in 2020 and 72 in 2019.
â¢ The women’s soccer program has 39 participants, up from 40 in 2020 and 45 in 2019.
â¢ The women’s swimming team has 24 participants, compared to 26 in 2020 and 30 in 2019.
â¢ The women’s tennis program has 21 participants, compared to 24 in 2020 and 22 in 2019.
â¢ The volleyball program has 43 participants, down from 34 in 2020, but down from 44 in 2019.
The total number of students enrolled in Kindergarten to Grade 12 is higher than projected, with 83 students enrolled in e-learning with partner districts. In total, the number of registrations in the district is 3,889. The projected total was 3,852.
Of the 83 students enrolled online, middle school has the highest number of participating students – 31. The high school has 23 students enrolled online, while STEM school has 18, Centennial has seven, and Sheridan Hills has four.
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