2020-21 STEM Parent Handbook
- Welcome Message
- Arrival & Dismissal
- Safety for in-person instruction
- School Hours
- Student Images
Welcome to the 2020-21 school year at the R-STEM Elementary School. I am so excited to welcome everyone to a new year. It is my desire to provide a high caliber educational experience for each student through the lens of a STEM integrated model.
I want each student to feel ownership of their own education here at R-STEM. Please feel free to contact me with any questions or just to say hi. This handout is a "quicklink" for parents to navigate the expectations.
You can download and print a copy of this handbook in English and Spanish here.
Amy Winter, R-STEM Principal
Arrival & Dismissal
- Buses drop students off in the rear parking lot off Elliott Ave. Staff greet the students as they exit the bus and escort them to their classes.
- Vehicles can drop students off inside the R-STEM main parking lot, along the front door sidewalk. This ensures everyone's safety.
- Parents and guardians are asked to drop off their child at the building doors. To ensure safety of all students and staff, guests are only able to access the main office.
- Any student who arrives at school after 7:30 a.m. should report to the main office to receive a tardy pass.
- Buses will be parked in the rear parking lot off Elliott Ave. Adams Transportation Bus Co. will park on 12th Avenue.
- Parent Pick-Up for students in grades PK-3 will exit through Door 10 after 2 p.m.
- Students in grades 4-5 will be dismissed from the cafeteria and exit through the front doors.
- Any adult picking up a student must have a pick up sign. If you do not have one, please check in to the main office.
If a student is going to be absent, please call us at 612-798-6600, then press 1.
Please provide the following information:
- Child's legal name
- Child's grade level & teacher
- A brief reason for the absence and date
Families can also support daily attendance by scheduling vacations, if possible, for times when school is not in session. Absences are excused for illness, family emergency, prior approved family vacations, funerals and religious holidays. Examples of unexcused absences include missing the bus and/or oversleeping.
For prior approval for family vacations, please email Amy Winter at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- If a child is injured or becomes ill during school hours, the school will call the parent/guardian at home, on their cellphone or at work. If no one can be reached, the number listed on the child's emergency form will be called. It is important that a current emergency number be listed with the main office.
- By state law, we will be conducting fire drills, severe weather drills and security lockdown drills throughout the year. In the event of an actual emergency, information will be shared via phone, email, posted on our website and on our Facebook page.
- Remember to turn in all medications to the nurse assistant.
We believe in all our students and want to support each of them to learn, grow and excel. We realize that there are times when students struggle and need additional support. When students need adult intervention, staff will support students through a problem-solving process. This process includes asking the student:
- What do you want?
- What are you doing to get what you want?
- Is it working?
- Can you figure out a better way?
We also believe mistakes are part of the process. We teach children about restitution, "making it right." We focus on helping children redirect themselves back to the kind of student they want to be, and making a wrong right, rather than focusing on negative consequences.
At R-STEM, we take responsibility for our learning, we treat everyone with respect and we behave in a safe-positive way.
- Be Responsible.
- Be Respectful.
- Be Safe.
We provide breakfast and lunch daily. Breakfast is provided free for all students.
All meals must be paid for in advance. Students can bring a check or cash in an envelope to give office staff or pay online at schoolpay.com.
- Paid: $2.70
- Double: $2.00
- Adult: $3.85
- Milk : $.60
Take Home Meals
- All hybrid students have the opportunity to receive a take home meal on Tuesdays. If you do not want this, please contact your child's teacher to cancel the order.
- Distance families are able to pick up meals at Richfield High School (7001 Harriet Ave. S., Door 1).
We have adopted a no birthday treat policy to ensure we are aligned with the District's wellness policy.
Recess is important for all students' physical health and wellbeing. (Each student will receive 20 minutes of recess—weather permitting.
We use the following guidelines for requiring students to go outside:
- Warmer than zero degrees: outside activity/recess.
- Below zero degrees: indoor recess for all students (if windchill brings temps to or below zero, no outdoors)
It is the responsibility of the family to provide their child(ren) with the appropriate attire for our ever-changing Minnesota weather. Please call our school social worker at 612-798-6661 if you are in need of assistance.
To stay inside during recess, your child must have a note signed by a doctor.
Questions? Call our health assistant, Nurse Jackson, at 612-798-6609.
Safety for in-person instruction
Families have the option to continue their learning through a virtual distance model or an in-person hybrid model. If you select the in-person model, here are some details around safety steps we use in the building:
- Individuals hand-sanitize as they enter learning spaces and throughout the day.
- Each individual is required to wear a face mask.
- Drinking fountains are not available except for the water bottle refill dispenser.
- Learning spaces are cleaned by students and staff throughout the day.
- Social distancing is practiced throughout the day.
- Students are organized by "pods" to limit contact outside of the immediate classroom.
- Specialist schedule is three weeks long to limit contact between classes.
Changes in Transportation
- If you need to make a change. please contact the office at 612-798-6600 (then press "0") before 1:30 p.m. If notification is not confirmed, we will follow regular transportation.
- Students are assigned specific busing and are not allowed to switch buses.
- We strive to ensure transportation is available to students who live a ways from the school. Transportation's primary goal is to deliver students to school and home safely.
- Riding the bus is a privilege which is dependent upon supporting the safety expectations. If a student is unable to travel on the bus safely, the situation will be communicated to administration. The school will contact parents/guardians to work together to resolve the situation. Repeated incidents may result in escalation of consequences.
Going to the Bus Stop
- Use sidewalks where provided.
- If there are no sidewalks, walk on the left shoulder of the street or roadway facing traffic, single file or no more than two abreast.
- Cross streets at corners.
- Use a direct route, but avoid crossing yards or empty lots to get to the bus stop or school.
- Arrive 3-6 minutes before the bus is scheduled to arrive at your bus stop.
Riding on the Bus
- Follow the driver's instructions.
- Remain in your seat until the bus stops at the destination.
- Follow safety procedures such as wearing a face mask.
- Speak in a quiet voice and use appropriate language.
- Keep hands, feet and objects inside the bus.
- Eating, drinking and chewing gum is not allowed on the bus.
2022-23 District Handbook
- Celebrations and Parties
- Distribution of Non school-Sponsored Materials on School Premises
- Eighteen-Year-Old Students
- Food in the Classroom
- Gifts to Employees
- Graduation Ceremony
- Interviews of Students by Outside Agencies
- Nondiscrimination Including Section 504
- Nutrition Services
- School Activities
- School Closing Procedures
- Student Publications and Materials
- Student Publications That Are School-Sponsored
- Student Records
Celebrations and Parties
- The District Wellness Policy must be followed for District-sponsored celebrations and parties.
- School-sponsored programs and activities, including the study of religious materials, customs, beliefs and holidays, must meet set criteria.
- For more information, read Guideline 112.1: Wellness and Policy 613: Religion in the Schools & Guideline 613.1: Religion in the Schools.
Distribution of Non school-Sponsored Materials on School Premises
- RPS recognizes that students and employees have the right to express themselves on school property.
- This protection includes handing out non school-sponsored material, subject to District regulations and procedures, at a reasonable time and place and in a reasonable manner.
- For more information, read Board Policy 109: Distribution of Non School-Sponsored Materials on School Premises by Students and Employees & Guideline 109.1.
- A child must be five years old on or before the first day of the school year to enroll in kindergarten.
- Children may be registered online or calling our enrollment center at 612-798-6007.
- If you have just moved into District 280, please call the Enrollment Center at 612-798-6007 or visit richfieldschools.org/enroll to enroll.
- For early entrance to kindergarten, students must turn five on or before October 31 and must complete district assessments prior to April 1 to determine eligibility.
Materials that are part of the basic educational program are provided with state, federal and local funds at no charge to a student. Students are expected to provide their own pencils, pens, paper, erasers, notebooks and other personal items. Students may be required to pay certain other fees or deposits, including (not an exhaustive list):
- Admission fees or charges for extracurricular activities, where attendance is optional and where the admission fees or charges a student must pay to attend or participate in an extracurricular activity are the same for all students, regardless of whether the student is enrolled in a public or a home school.
- Cost for materials for a class project that exceeds minimum requirements and is kept by the student.
- Security deposits for the return of materials, supplies or equipment.
- Personal physical education and athletic equipment and apparel.
- Items of personal use or products that a student has an option to purchase such as student publications, class rings, annuals and graduation announcements.
- Field trips considered supplementary to the district’s educational program.
- Admission fees or costs to attend or participate in optional extracurricular activities and programs.
- Voluntarily purchased student health and accident insurance.
- Use of musical instruments owned or rented by the school district.
- A school district-sponsored driver or motorcycle education training course.
- Transportation to and from school for students living within two miles of school (pay-to-ride).
- Transportation of students to and from optional extracurricular activities or post-secondary instruction conducted at locations other than school.
- Technology fees for lost or damaged District-provided devices (see technology page).
Students will be charged for textbooks, workbooks and library books that are lost or destroyed. The school district may waive a required fee or deposit if the student and parent/guardian are unable to pay. For more information, contact your school administrator.
Food in the Classroom
- Food and beverages will not be part of classroom celebrations, parties or student birthday recognition events.
- Any classroom snacks provided by the District will follow USDA Smart Snacks in School guidelines.
- For more information, visit the wellness section on the Nutrition Services web page, which includes a list of non-food celebration ideas, or read Board Policy 112: Wellness & Guideline 112.1: Wellness.
- All fundraising activities conducted by student groups and organizations and/or parent groups must be approved in advance by the Superintendent for any districtwide fundraising or related activity and the building principal or appropriate administrator for any building-related fundraising or related activity.
- For more information, read Board Policy 955: Fundraising Policy & Guideline 955.1.
Gifts to Employees
- Employees are not allowed to ask for, accept or receive a gift from a student, parent or other individual or organization of greater than $35 from an individual or $100 from a group.
- Parents/guardians and students are encouraged to write letters and notes of appreciation or to give small tokens of thanks.
- For more information, read Board Policy 408: Gifts to Employees & Guideline 408.1.
- Student participation in the graduation ceremony is a privilege, not a right.
- Students who have completed the requirements for graduation are allowed to participate in graduation exercises unless participation is denied for appropriate reasons, which may include discipline.
- Graduation exercises are under the control and direction of the building principal(s).
For more information, read Board Policy 522: Commencement Participation.
Interviews of Students by Outside Agencies
- Generally, students may not be interviewed during the school day by persons other than a student’s parents/guardians or school district officials, employees and/or agents, except as provided by law and/or school policy.
- The District makes every effort to have law enforcement conduct student interviews off campus and outside of the school day.
- For more information, read Board Policy 977: Cooperation with Law Enforcement Agencies & Guideline 977.1.
Nondiscrimination Including Section 504
The school district does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, sex, marital status, parental status, status with regard to public assistance, disability, sexual orientation, including gender identity and expression, or age in its programs and activities.
Further, the school district is committed to protecting students with disabilities from discrimination on the basis of disability. The district must identify and evaluate learners, within the intent of Section 504, who may need services, accommodations or programs in order that such individuals may receive a free appropriate public education. Contact your building 504 coordinator for more specific information or refer to the following link: Section 504/Health Plan Flow Chart.
Inquiries regarding compliance with questions about this policy may be directed to your building principal or the Executive Director of Special Programs at the District Office (401 70th St. West, Richfield, MN 55423).
Inquiries can also be made to:
The Commissioner of Human Rights
Minnesota Dept. of Human Rights
540 Fairview Avenue North, Ste. 201
St. Paul, MN 55104
Department of Education
1500 Highway 36
West Roseville, Minnesota 55113
Director of the Office of Civil Rights Chicago Office for Civil Rights
U.S. Department of Education
500 W. Madison Street, Suite 1475
Chicago, Illinois 60661
For more information, read:
Free & Reduced-Price Meals
- During the past two years, all meals were free for students thanks to federal COVID-19 relief funds. Those funds have now expired, and student lunches are no longer free. Student breakfast will continue to be free for all RPS students.
- Please complete the Application for Educational Benefits to apply for free or reduced-price meals for the 2022-23 school year. Apply online by downloading the SchoolCafe app (Apple | Google Play) on any smart device or go to this link on a computer.
- In addition to receiving free or reduced-price meals, qualified students may receive waivers for college application fees, fee waivers for tests such as the ACT and SAT, reduced-fare bus passes with MetroTransit, discounts from internet providers, P-EBT funds and more. Based on the percentage of eligible families, our schools and our District also receive funding that can be used to benefit all students, such as field trips and added staffing.
- While a full meal is available to students through this program, second entrees, à la carte items or individual milks without a meal purchase require payments and a positive balance in a student’s account.
- For more information regarding eligibility for free and reduced-price lunch, contact Michael Manning, Director of Food & Nutrition Services.
School Meal Payments, Menu & More
- For fast, simple and secure online payments go to SchoolPay.com to instantly add funds and view student meal activity.
- To access our customizable breakfast and lunch menus and all nutritional information, visit the MealViewer website or download the app (Apple | Google Play) on any smart device.
- Students will be notified of their assigned lunchtime on the first day of school.
- The District provides opportunities for students to pursue special interests that contribute to their physical, mental and emotional health; however, instruction is the District’s priority.
- Students who participate in school-sponsored activities are expected to responsibly represent the school and community. All rules pertaining to student conduct and student discipline apply to school activities.
- All spectators at school-sponsored activities are expected to behave appropriately. Students and employees may be subject to discipline and parents/guardians and other spectators may be subject to sanctions for inappropriate, illegal or unsportsmanlike behavior at these activities or events.
- The Richfield Public School District is a member of the Minnesota State High School League (MSHSL). Students who participate in MSHSL activities must also abide by the MSHSL rules. The District will enforce all MSHSL rules during the school year and in the summer where applicable.
- Employees who conduct MSHSL activities will cover applicable rules, penalties and opportunities with students and parents/guardians prior to the start of an activity. For more information about the MSHSL rules and student eligibility requirements, contact the Activities Director or refer to the MSHSL Eligibility Brochure located on the MSHSL website.
- For more information, read Board Policy 651: Athletic and Activity Program, Guideline 651.1 & Guideline 651.2.
School Closing Procedures
- School may be canceled when the superintendent believes the safety of students and employees is threatened by severe weather or other circumstances.
- The superintendent will make a decision about closing school or school buildings as early as possible. While all efforts will be made to make decisions the evening before possible closure, the superintendent will make a final decision and have communication enacted by 6 a.m. For after school programming decisions when school is already in session, the superintendent will have communication enacted by 1:30 p.m.
- School closing announcements will be broadcast on WCCO, KSTP, KMSP, and KARE 11 news stations, as well as posted on District social media platforms.
- The superintendent will communicate directly with families and staff through our school communication system, which may include email, phone call and/or text message.
In the interest of student safety and to ensure that schools are drug-free, District authorities may conduct searches. Students violate school policy when they carry contraband on their person or in their personal possessions or store contraband in their desks, lockers or vehicles parked on school property. “Contraband” means any unapproved item, the possession of which is not allowed by RPS policy and/or law. If a search yields contraband, school officials will take the item(s) and, where appropriate, give the item(s) to legal officials for final placement. Students found to be in violation of this policy are subject to discipline aligned with Policy 451: Student Behavior, which may include suspension, exclusion and, when appropriate, the student may be referred to legal officials.
Lockers and Personal Possessions Within a Locker
According to state law, school lockers are the property of the school district. At no time does the District give up its exclusive control of lockers provided for the convenience of students. Inspection of the interior of lockers may be conducted by school officials for any reason at any time, without notice, without student consent and without a search warrant.
Students’ belongings within a school locker may be searched only when school officials have a reasonable suspicion that the search will uncover evidence of a violation of law or school rules. As soon as practicable after the search of a student’s personal possessions, the school officials will provide notice of the search to students whose lockers were searched unless disclosure would impede an ongoing investigation by police or school officials.
- School desks are the property of the District. At no time does the school give up its exclusive control of desks provided for the convenience of students. Inspection of the interior of desks may be conducted by school officials for any reason at any time, without notice, without student consent and without a search warrant.
Personal Possessions and Student’s Person
- The personal possessions of a student and/or a student’s person may be searched when school officials have a reasonable suspicion that the search may uncover a violation of law or school rules. The search will be reasonable in its scope and intrusiveness.
Patrols and Inspections
- School officials may conduct routine patrols of student parking lots and other District locations and routine inspections of the exterior of the motor vehicles of students. Such patrols and inspections may be conducted without notice, without student consent and without a search warrant.
Searching the Interior of a Student’s Motor Vehicle
- The interior of a student’s motor vehicle in a District location, including the glove and trunk compartments, may be searched when school officials have a reasonable suspicion that the search may uncover a violation of law and/or District policy or school rule. The search will be reasonable in its scope and intrusiveness. Such searches may be conducted without notice, without consent and without a search warrant.
For more information, read Board Policy 543: Search of Student Lockers, Desks, Personal Possessions, Student's Person, Motor Vehicles and All Other Locations & Guideline 543.1.
Student Publications and Materials
- The policy of the District is to protect students’ free speech rights while, at the same time, preserving the District’s obligation to provide a learning environment that is free of disruption.
- All school publications are under the supervision of the building principal and faculty advisor.
- For more information, read Board Policy 616: School Sponsored Student Publications.
Student Publications That Are School-Sponsored
RPS may edit student expression in school-sponsored publications and activities. Faculty advisors shall supervise student writers to ensure compliance with the law and District policies. Students producing official school publications and participating in school activities will be under the supervision of a faculty advisor and the school principal. “Official school publications” means school newspapers, yearbooks, webpages or material produced in communications, journalism or other classes as part of the curriculum. Expression in an official school publication or school-sponsored activity is prohibited when the material:
- Is obscene to minors;
- Is libelous or slanderous;
- Advertises or promotes any product or service not permitted for minors by law;
- Encourages students to commit illegal acts or violate school regulations or substantially disrupts the orderly operation of school or school activities;
- Expresses or advocates sexual, racial, or religious harassment or violence or prejudice;
- Is distributed or displayed in violation of time, place, and manner regulations.
Expression in an official school publication or school-sponsored activity is subject to editorial control by the District over the style and content when the District’s actions are reasonably related to teaching concerns.
For more information, read: Policy 616: School-Sponsored Student Publications.
- Board Policy 581 makes a student's record available to parents/guardians and students who are 18 years of age or older. Upon turning 18, students have the same rights as parents/guardians and have control over their records.
- There is a procedure for challenging the accuracy or completeness of school records.
- The District will not give information from a student's records to a third party without permission of the student or parents/guardians, or unless the request is made with a subpoena or court order.
- When a student transfers from the District, the student records are transferred to the enrolling school when requested by the school. Parental permission is not required.
- Records may be disclosed to military recruiting officers under the following circumstances:
- The District shall release to military recruiting officers the names, addresses and home telephone numbers of students in grades 11 and 12 within 60 days after the date of request for such data.
- The District shall give parents and students notice of the right to refuse release of this data to military recruiting officers by publishing the notice in the District calendar and handbook, or by other means reasonably likely to inform the parents and students of the right. If a parent or eligible student objects to the release of this data to military recruiting officers, the data shall not be disclosed.
- Contact your school administrator with questions.
- Directory information means information contained in an education record of a student which would not generally be considered harmful or an invasion of privacy if disclosed. It includes, but is not limited to: the student's name, name of school attended, dates of attendance, grade level, date of graduation, participation in officially recognized activities and sports, weight and height of members of athletic teams, degrees and awards received, as well as photos/videotape (excluding security camera videos in schools and/or in school buses) for school approved publications, school news purposes, school video productions or local cable casts. It also includes the name, address and telephone number of the student's parents.
- The District is committed to working collaboratively with parents regarding the education of students as well as ensuring the privacy of student records. Parents and eligible students have certain rights regarding student records including the right to inspect, right to seek amendments to the record, and the right to consent to disclosure of personally identifiable information in a student’s educational record. This information, along with information about student “directory information” that is available to the public along with who has access to a student’s educational record and when and how this information can be limited is included in the “Legal Notifications” section of the District website or by calling the Superintendent’s office at 612-798-6012.
- For more information, read Board Policy 581: Protection and Privacy of Pupil Records, Guideline 581.1 & Guideline 581.2.
- To opt your child out of any of the above, please complete this online form or contact your child’s school office.
- The District will provide transportation, at the expense of the District, for all resident students based on the following:
- Students in grades 6-12 who live two miles or more from the school
- Students in grades 1-5 who live one mile or more from the school
- Kindergarten students who live ¼ mile or more from the school
- Transportation will be provided on all regularly scheduled school days or make-up days. Transportation will not be provided during school breaks, unless otherwise indicated by the District.
- The District will not provide transportation for students whose transportation privileges have been revoked or have been voluntarily surrendered by the student's parent or guardian.
- The District may provide transportation for students to and from extracurricular activities. To the extent the District provides extracurricular transportation, the District may charge a fee for transportation of students to and from extracurricular activities and optional field trips at locations other than school.
For more information, visit the Transportation website or read:
- Alternative Educational Opportunities
- Extended School Year Opportunities
- Field Trips
- Graduation Requirements
- Post-Secondary Enrollment Options
- Promotion, Retention and Acceleration
- Summer School
Alternative Educational Opportunities
- Some students may be at risk of not completing their educational programs. RPS provides alternative learning options for students who are at risk of not succeeding in school.
- Alternative educational opportunities may include special tutoring, modified curriculum and instruction, instruction through electronic media, special education services, homebound instruction, independent study, project-based learning and enrollment in an alternative learning center or program, among others.
- For more information about our alternative learning program, please visit the RCEP website. Students and parents/guardians with questions about these programs should contact the Director, Dr. Kasya Willhite, at 612-412-4183 or email@example.com.
Extended School Year Opportunities
- The District provides extended school year opportunities to a student who has an Individualized Education Program (IEP) if the student’s IEP team determines the services are necessary during a break in instruction in order to provide a free and appropriate public education.
- For more information on extended school year opportunities for students with an IEP, contact the Director of Special Education, Dr. Alecia Mobley, at 612-798-6043 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Field trips may be offered to supplement student learning.
- Field trips may be optional and, if so, students who participate may be charged.
- Students will not be required to pay for instructional trips that take place during the school day, relate directly to a course of study and require student participation.
- For more information, please read Policy 653: Field Trips, Guideline 653.1 & Guideline 653.2.
High School Level Courses Required for Graduation
Must be sufficient to satisfy all academic standards in the English language arts.
Must include Algebra 1, Geometry and Algebra II. A computer science, career and technical education course may fulfill a mathematics credit if the course meets the applicable state academic standards requirements.
Must include at least one credit of biology, one credit of chemistry or physics, and one elective credit of science. The combination of credits must be sufficient to satisfy all of the academic standards in either chemistry or physics and all other academic standards in science. An agricultural science, or a career and technical education course may fulfill a science credit if the course meets the applicable state academic standards. An agricultural science or a career and technical education course cannot fulfill the biology requirement.
Must include United States history, geography, government and citizenship, world history, and economics sufficient to satisfy all of the academic standards in social studies. An agriculture education or business economics course may fulfill a one-half credit if the academic standards for economics are satisfied. A one-half credit of economics taught in an agriculture education or business department may fulfill a one-half credit in social studies if the credit is sufficient to satisfy all of the academic standards in economics.
Must be sufficient to satisfy all of the state or local academic standards in the arts. A career and technical education course may fulfill an arts credit.
Must be sufficient to satisfy all physical education standards.
Electives are all classes that are not specifically required to fulfill the graduation requirements listed above.
School District Required and Elective Standards
Additionally, all students must satisfactorily complete the MN K-12 academic standards for health and 2 credits worth of fine arts standards in the areas of Career and Technical Education or World Languages.
Students with an individualized education program, Section 504 accommodation plan, or limited English proficiency needs may be eligible for testing accommodations, modifications and/or exemption. For additional information, you may contact the Richfield High School Counseling Office at 612-798-6120.
For more information, please read Policy 521: Graduation Requirements, Guideline 521.1 & Guideline 521.2.
Post-Secondary Enrollment Options
- Academically qualified ninth, tenth, eleventh and twelfth grade students may apply for the state's Post-Secondary Enrollment Options (PSEO) program.
- General information about the PSEO program including the application process and minimum academic requirements will be provided to all eighth, ninth, tenth, and eleventh grade students by March 1. Early in the semester immediately preceding the intended PSEO term, interested students should speak with their school counselor regarding specific requirements for each post-secondary school of interest, as each school has its own application forms and deadlines.
- All PSEO applications require parent/guardian approval and must be submitted to the school counseling office for processing. After acceptance, students will continue to work with their school counselor to choose their college courses. Questions may be directed to the RHS counseling office at 612-798-6120.
Promotion, Retention and Acceleration
- All students are expected to achieve an acceptable level of proficiency. Students who achieve at an acceptable level will be promoted to the next grade level at the completion of the school year. Retention of a student may be considered when professional staff and parents/guardians feel that it is in the best interest of the student. The superintendent’s decision will be final.
- RPS has a variety of services to help students succeed in school. For more information, contact the assistant superintendent, Dr. Latanya Daniels.
- For more information read Board Policy 524: Promotion, Retention and Acceleration & Guideline 524.1.
RPS may provide summer school learning opportunities. Our main goal is to support students academically, socially and emotionally. Summer School students fall into one or more of the following categories:
- Student performs substantially below the performance level for pupils of the same age in a locally-determined achievement test.
- Student has been referred by a school district for enrollment in an eligible program or a program pursuant to section 124D.69.
- Student speaks English as a second language or has limited English proficiency.
- Student is at least one year behind in satisfactorily completing coursework or obtaining credits for graduation.
For more information, contact the main office of your child’s school.
Rules & Discipline
- Bullying Prohibition
- Drug-Free School and Workplace
- Electronic Devices
- Harassment PROHIBITION
- Hazing Prohibition
- Internet Acceptable Use
- Parking on School District Property
- School Bus Conduct and Consequences for Misbehavior
- Student Dress and Appearance
- Tobacco-Free Schools; Possession and Use of Tobacco, Tobacco-Related Devices, and Electronic Delivery Devices
- Weapons Prohibition
- The School Board believes that regular attendance in school and punctuality are important factors in a student's success in academic work, including success in meeting state and local requirements for graduation.
- Students who attend school consistently and are on time develop better socially, establish better communication with their teachers, and acquire important lifelong habits such as dependability, self-sufficiency, and responsibility.
- For more information, read Board Policy 545: Attendance & Guideline 545.1.
- The District is committed to providing a safe and respectful learning environment for all students.
- Acts of bullying, in any form, by either an individual student or a group of students, are not allowed on District property, at school-related functions or activities, on school transportation, or by misuse of technology.
- For more information, read Board Policy 113: Bullying Prohibition.
- To report an incident of suspected bullying or harassment, contact your child's school administrator or complete the appropriate form and return it to your child's principal:
- Appropriate school behavior is critical to academic success and a safe and vibrant learning community. Teaching and learning appropriate school behavior is the task of all staff, students, and families/guardians. Working together to establish and maintain high standards of behavior and a school culture that respects and accepts differences is a shared responsibility. For detailed information on the Student Code of Conduct and consequences for violations, see the RPS Behavior Violations document.
- For more information, read Board Policy 541: Student Behavior & Guideline 541.1.
Drug-Free School and Workplace
- The possession and use of alcohol, controlled substances, medical cannabis and toxic substances are not allowed at school or in any other school location before, during or after school hours.
- Paraphernalia associated with controlled substances also is not allowed. The District will discipline or take appropriate action against anyone who violates this policy.
- District policy is not violated when a person brings a controlled substance that has a currently accepted medical treatment use onto a school location for personal use if the person has a physician’s prescription for the substance except medical cannabis is not allowed on school property even if prescribed.
- Students who have prescriptions must comply with the Policy 584: Student Medication.
- The school district will provide an instructional program in every elementary and secondary school on chemical abuse and the prevention of chemical dependency.
- For more information, read Board Policy 104: Drug-Free Workplace/Drug-Free School.
- Use of electronic devices by students are subject to the individual building’s rules.
- Students are prohibited from using a cell phone or other electronic communication device to engage in conduct prohibited by RPS policies including, but not limited to, cheating, bullying, harassment, gang activity, etc. If the District has a reasonable suspicion that a student has violated a school rule or law by use of a cell phone or other electronic device, the District may search the device. The search of the device will be reasonably related in scope to the circumstances justifying the search.
- Students who use an electronic device during the school day and/or in violation of District policies may be subject to disciplinary action pursuant to Policy 541: Student Behavior. In addition, a student’s cell phone or electronic device may be confiscated by the District and, if applicable, provided to law enforcement. Cell phones or other electronic devices that are confiscated and retained by the District will be returned in accordance with school building procedures.
- For more information, read Policy 107: Electronic Use and Communication, Guideline 107.1 & Guideline 107.2.
- The school district strives to maintain a learning and working environment that is free from harassment and violence on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, sex, age, marital status, familial status, status with regard to public assistance, sexual orientation including gender identity, or disability. The school district prohibits any form of harassment or violence on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, sex, age, marital status, familial status, status with regard to public assistance, sexual orientation including gender identity, or disability.
- To report an incident of suspected bullying or harassment, complete the online Harassment, Violence & Bullying Form. Alternatively, you can complete the appropriate paper form and turn into your building principal: RPS Bully/Harassment Form—Elementary or RPS Bully/Harassment Paper Form—Secondary.
- For more information, read Board Policy 103 Harassment Prohibition.
- Hazing is not allowed. No student, teacher, administrator, volunteer, contractor or other employee of the school district will plan, direct, encourage, aid, or engage in hazing.
- Students who violate this rule will be subject to disciplinary action following Policy 541: Student Behavior.
- For detailed information, read Board Policy 108: Hazing Prohibition.
Internet Acceptable Use
- All RPS students have conditional access to the District’s computer system, including internet access, for limited educational purposes. This includes the use of the system for classroom activities, educational research and professional and career development. The use of the District’s assets and systems is a privilege, not a right.
- As per the Acceptable Use Agreement, usage of school-issued devices on external networks are also subject to disciplinary measures if used in violation of this policy. Unacceptable use of school-issued devices, the District’s computer system or the internet may result in one or more of the following consequences: loss of device privileges; suspension or cancellation of use or access privileges; payments for damages and repairs; discipline under other appropriate school district policies, including, but not limited to, suspension, expulsion, or exclusion; or civil or criminal liability under other applicable laws.
Within 30 days of the start of each school year, the school district must give parents and students direct and timely notice, by United States mail, email, or other direct form of communication, of any curriculum, testing, or assessment technology provider contract affecting a student's educational data. The notice must:
- identify each curriculum, testing, or assessment technology provider with access to educational data;
- identify the educational data affected by the curriculum, testing, or assessment technology provider contract; and
include information about the contract inspection and provide contact information for a school department to which a parent or student may direct questions or concerns regarding any program or activity that allows a curriculum, testing, or assessment technology provider to access a student's educational data.
The school district must provide parents and students an opportunity to inspect a complete copy of any contract with a technology provider.
- Students will receive a copy of the District’s “Internet Acceptable Use” policy and are expected to understand and agree to abide by the policy as a condition of use of the school district’s computer assets and systems. All students who wish to use the District’s computer assets and systems must sign the Internet Use Agreement form annually.
- A copy of the District’s Acceptable Use Policy is on the Technology website.
- For more information, read Policy 107: Electronic Use and Communication, Guideline 107.1 & Guideline 107.2.
Parking on School District Property
The District allows limited use and parking of motor vehicles by students in school district locations subject to the following rules:
- Parking a motor vehicle on school property during the school day is a privilege;
- Parking is permitted in designated areas only, by permit. For information, contact the Director of Facilities & Transportation;
- Students are not permitted to use motor vehicles during the school day in any school district locations unless an emergency occurs and permission has been granted to the student by the high school administration;
- Students are permitted to use motor vehicles on the high school campus(es) only before and after the school day;
- Unauthorized vehicles parked on school district property may be towed at the expense of the owner or operator.
The school district may conduct routine patrols of school district properties and inspections of the exteriors of the motor vehicles of students. Interiors of students’ vehicles in school district locations may be searched when school officials have a reasonable suspicion that the search will uncover a violation of law and/or school policy or rule. If a search yields contraband, school officials may seize the item and may turn it over to legal authorities when appropriate. A student who violates this policy may be subject to withdrawal of parking privileges and/or discipline according to Policy 541: Student Behavior.
- Visitors are permitted to park in designated District visitor parking areas.
- Unattended vehicles left in other locations on District property may be towed at the owner’s expense.
School Bus Conduct and Consequences for Misbehavior
Riding the school bus is a privilege, not a right. The RPS student behavior rules are in effect for all students on school buses, including nonpublic and charter school students. The school district will not provide transportation for students whose transportation privileges have been revoked.
The District is committed to transporting students in a safe and orderly manner. To accomplish this, student riders are expected to follow District rules for waiting at a school bus stop and rules for riding on a school bus.
While waiting for the bus or after being dropped off at a school bus stop, all students must comply with the following rules:
- Get to the bus stop five minutes before your scheduled pick up time. The school bus driver will not wait for late students.
- Respect the property of others while waiting at the bus stop.
- Keep your arms, legs, and belongings to yourself.
- Use appropriate language.
- Stay away from the street, road, or highway when waiting for the bus.
- Wait until the bus stops before approaching the bus.
- After getting off the bus, move away from the bus.
- If you must cross the street, always cross in front of the bus where the driver can see you. Wait for the driver to signal to you before crossing the street.
- No fighting, harassment, intimidation, or horseplay.
- No use of alcohol, tobacco, or drugs.
While riding a school bus, all riders must comply with the following rules:
- Follow the driver’s directions at all times.
- Remain seated facing forward while the bus is in motion.
- Talk quietly and use appropriate language.
- Keep all parts of your body inside the bus.
- Keep arms, legs, and belongings to yourself and out of the aisle.
- No fighting, harassment, intimidation, or horseplay.
- Do not throw any object.
- No eating, drinking, or use of alcohol, tobacco, or drugs.
- Do not bring any weapons or dangerous objects on the school bus.
- Do not damage the school bus.
Consequences for school bus/bus stop misconduct will be imposed by the District according to Policy 541: Student Behavior. All school bus/bus stop misconduct will be reported to the school district’s transportation safety director. Serious misconduct may be reported to local law enforcement.
A list of possible consequences is located at richfieldschools.org/transportation, under the Consequences for Misconduct on the Bus section.
Student Dress and Appearance
- The District seeks to enhance the education of students by establishing expectations of dress and grooming that are related to educational goals and community standards. This policy includes after school and community education programs for students unless uniforms are required for the program.
- For detailed information on the school district’s “Student Dress and Appearance” policy and guidelines, see Board Policy 547: Student Dress and Appearance & Guideline 547.1: RDLS Uniform Dress.
Tobacco-Free Schools; Possession and Use of Tobacco, Tobacco-Related Devices, and Electronic Delivery Devices
- School district students and staff have the right to learn and work in an environment that is tobacco free. School policy is violated by any individual’s use of tobacco, tobacco-related devices, or carrying or using activated electronic cigarette delivery devices in a public school, on school grounds, in any school-owned vehicles, or at any school events or activities.
- Students may not possess any type of tobacco, tobacco-related device, or electronic cigarette delivery devices in a public school, on school grounds, in any school-owned vehicles, or at any school events or activities. Any student who violates this policy is subject to school district discipline.
- For detailed information, read Board Policy 105: Policy on Tobacco Free Environment. Contact school administration if you have questions or wish to report violations.
- No person will possess, use, or distribute a weapon when in a school location except as provided in school district policy.
- A “weapon” means any object, device or instrument designed as a weapon or through its use is capable of threatening or producing bodily harm or which may be used to inflict self-injury including, but not limited to, any firearm, whether loaded or unloaded; airguns; pellet guns; BB guns; all knives; blades; clubs; metal knuckles; nunchucks; throwing stars; explosives; fireworks; mace and other propellants; stun guns; ammunition; poisons; chains; arrows; and objects that have been modified to serve as a weapon.
- A weapon also includes look-alike weapons. Appropriate discipline and action will be taken against any person who violates this policy.
- The school district does not allow the possession, use or distribution of weapons by students. Discipline of students will include, at a minimum: immediate out-of-school suspension; confiscation of the weapon; immediate notification of police; parent or guardian notification; and recommendation to the superintendent of dismissal for a period of time not to exceed one year. A student who possesses a firearm at school, at school events or on the bus will be expelled for at least one year, subject to school district discretion on a case-by-case basis. For a copy of the “School Weapons” policy, see Board Policy 111: Weapons on School Premises.
Health & Safety
- Crisis Management
- Emergency Contact Information
- Health Information
- Visitors in District Buildings
- All student injuries that occur at school, at or school-sponsored activities or on school transportation should be reported to the health services office.
- Parents/guardians of an injured student will be notified as soon as possible.
- If the student requires immediate medical attention, the principal or other district leader will call 911 or seek emergency medical treatment and then contact the parents/guardians.
- The school district has developed a Crisis Management Policy and Procedures. Each school building has its own building-specific crisis management plan.
- The Crisis Management Policy and Procedures address a range of potential crisis situations in the school district and includes general crisis procedures for securing buildings, classroom evacuation, campus evacuation, sheltering and communication procedures. The school district will conduct lock-down drills, fire drills and a tornado drill. Building plans include classroom and building evacuation procedures.
- For more information, read Board Policy 802: Crisis Management Policy.
Emergency Contact Information
Visit the school health office page for your child(ren)’s school for specific information.
The Health Office in each building is equipped to handle responses to injuries and episodic or chronic health conditions. If the nurse’s office is not open, assistance can be sought from the building’s administrative office. If a student experiences a more serious medical emergency at school, 911 will be called and/or a parent/guardian will be contacted depending on the situation.
The purpose of this policy is to guide students and staff to be able to attend school without becoming infected with serious communicable or infectious diseases. For detailed information, read Policy 106: Students and Employees with Communicable and Infectious Diseases.
Minnesota law requires children enrolled in child care, early childhood education, or school to be immunized against certain diseases, unless the child is medically or non-medically exempt. For your child to enroll or remain enrolled, the required form (or comparable record) must be on file with the school prior to the first day of attendance for students who are not transfer students and within 30 days for students who are identified as transfer students.
Here is a link to the Minnesota Immunization Form
Contact the health services staff for your child’s school if you have questions.
Medications at School During the School Day
Medication taken/given at school must be authorized annually by a licensed prescriber, or more frequently if there is a change in the medication order. Medications are to be in the original container and left with the appropriate school district personnel along with a Medication Authorization Consent (or equivalent) completed and signed by the licensed prescriber and signed by the parent/guardian requesting that the medication be given at school.
Students may not carry or take medications on their own unless they have authorization to do so from the prescriber and parent/guardian and with the following exceptions:
- Prescription asthma medications self-administered with an inhaler and/or other non-controlled medications authorized by a licensed prescriber and the parent/guardian for self-carry/administration.
- A student in grade 9 or above may possess and use nonprescription pain relief in a manner consistent with the labeling, if the school district has received written authorization from the student’s parent/guardian permitting the student to self-administer the medication. The parent/guardian must submit written authorization for the student to self-administer the medication each school year. The school district may revoke a student’s privilege to possess and use nonprescription pain relievers if the school district determines that the student is abusing the privilege. At no time will any student be permitted to share medication or give any medication to any other student. This provision does not apply to the possession or use of any drug or product containing ephedrine or pseudoephedrine as its sole active ingredient or as one of its active ingredients.
- Parents/guardians of students requesting that short-term (three weeks or less) non-controlled prescription medication be administered during school hours by school staff are required, according to school district guidelines, to provide the school with a written parent/guardian release for the administration of this medication. This category of medication is typically limited to anti-infectives, such as antibiotics, antifungals or antivirals.
Over-the-counter (non-prescription) medication asked to be administered by school staff is given with written licensed prescriber and parent/guardian authorization. Stock medication is neither purchased nor administered by school staff.
A medication consent form is available from the health service staff at your child’s school.
Contact the health service staff for your child’s school if you have questions.
Health Care Procedures
Health care procedures needed and requested to be done at school are to be authorized by a healthcare provider. A health care procedure consent form is available from health service staff at the school your child attends or on the school health office page of your school’s website (above). Contact the health service staff at your child’s school if you have questions.
Upon enrollment and each school year thereafter parents/guardians are asked to provide, review, and update their child’s personal health information. This includes health conditions, immunizations, and recent health history (e.g. injuries, illnesses, surgeries within the past year). This information helps staff at school respond to the individual health needs of your child by maintaining an accurate and up-to-date student health record. NOTE: Medication consents, health care procedure consents, and medical management action plans (e.g. diabetes, seizures, asthma, and anaphylaxis) are to be updated annually. Contact health service staff for your child’s school if you have questions.
Here is the link to the Emergency/Health Form: Emergency/Health Form
Visitors in District Buildings
- Parents/guardians and community members are welcome to visit the schools. To ensure the safety of those in the school and to avoid disruption to the learning environment, all visitors must report directly to the school administration office upon entering the building, with the exception of events open to the public. All visitors will be required to sign in at the office and to wear a “visitors badge” while in the building during the school day.
- Visitors must have the approval of the principal before visiting a classroom during instructional time.
- An individual or group may be denied permission to visit a school or school property, or such permission may be revoked, if the visitor does not comply with school district procedures or if the visit is not in the best interests of the students, employees, or the school district.
- Students are not allowed to bring visitors to school without prior permission from the principal.
- For detailed information, read Board Policy 953: Visitors to School District Buildings and Sites & Guideline 953.1.
- Asbestos Management Update
- Employment Background Checks
- Equal Access to School Facilities
- Notice of Violent Behavior by Students
- Parent Right to Know
- Pesticide, Fertilizer and Weed Control Application Notice
- Pledge of Allegiance
- Student Surveys
- Video and Audio Recording
Asbestos Management Update
- The school district has developed an asbestos management plan. A copy of this plan can be found in the District Office and is available on the district’s website. Asbestos removal (abatement) activities are currently planned for the following buildings during the 2021-22 school year: High School, Middle School, and Sheridan Hills Elementary School.
- Additional information is available on our Facilities page or may be requested by contacting the Director of Facilities and Transportation at 612-798-6081.
Employment Background Checks
- The school district will seek criminal history background checks for all applicants who receive an offer of employment with the school district.
- The school district also will seek criminal history background checks for all individuals, except enrolled student volunteers, who are offered the opportunity to provide athletic coaching services or other extracurricular academic coaching services to the school district, regardless of whether compensation is paid. These positions include, but are not limited to, all athletic coaches, extracurricular academic coaches, assistants, and advisors.
- The school district may elect to seek criminal history background checks for other volunteers, independent contractors, and student employees.
Equal Access to School Facilities
- The District allows secondary students to conduct non curriculum-related meetings during non-instructional time.
- The District will not discriminate against or deny equal access or a fair opportunity on the basis of the religious, political, philosophical or other content of the speech at such meetings.
- These meetings will be voluntary and student-initiated; will not be school-sponsored by school employees or agents; employees or agents of the school will be present at religious meetings only in a non-participatory capacity; the meetings will not interfere with the orderly conduct of educational activities within the school; and nonschool persons will not direct, control, or regularly attend activities of student groups.
- All meetings under this provision must follow the procedures established by the District.
- For more information, read Board Policy 801: Student Use of Secondary School Facilities & Guideline 801.1.
Notice of Violent Behavior by Students
- The District will give notice to teachers and other appropriate District staff before students with a history of violent behavior are placed in their classrooms.
- The District will annually give notice to parents/guardians that such information will be shared with school staff.
- The student’s parents/guardians have the right to review and challenge their child’s records, including the data documenting the history of violent behavior.
- For more information, read Board Policy 582: Staff Notification of Violent Behavior of Students and Guideline 582.1.
Parent Right to Know
- If a parent requests it, the District will provide information regarding the professional qualifications of their child’s classroom teachers, including, at a minimum, the following:
- whether the teacher has met state qualifications and licensing criteria for the grade levels and subject areas in which the teacher provides instruction;
- whether the teacher is teaching under emergency or other provisional licensing status through which state qualification or licensing criteria have been waived;
- the baccalaureate degree major of the teacher and any other graduate certification or degree held by the teacher, and the field of discipline of the certification or degree;
- whether the student is provided services by paraprofessionals and, if so, their qualifications.
- In addition, the District will provide parents with information as to the level of achievement of their child in each of the state academic assessments. The District also will provide notice to parents if, for four or more consecutive weeks, their child has been assigned to or taught by a teacher who is not highly qualified.
Pesticide, Fertilizer and Weed Control Application Notice
The school district may plan to apply pesticide(s) on school property. To the extent the school district applies certain pesticides, the school district will provide notice by September 15 as to the school district’s plan to use these pesticides. A parent may request to be notified prior to the application of certain pesticides on days different from those specified in the notice. Additional information regarding what pesticides are used, an estimated schedule of pesticide applications (which will be available for review or copying at the school office), and the long-term health effects of the class of pesticide on children can be requested by contacting the Director of Facilities and Transportation at 612-798-6081. Fertilizer and weed control applications are applied during the prospective months of May, June/July, and September/October each year.
Lead In Water Annual Notification
Minnesota Statute 121A.335 requires public school buildings serving pre-kindergarten through grade 12 to test for lead in water every 5 years. Richfield Public Schools has historically conducted and continues to conduct Lead in Drinking Water testing per the Minnesota Department of Health guidelines.
For more information on Richfield Public Schools lead reduction program and testing results, see the Facilities page or contact the Director of Facilities and Transportation at 612-798-6081.
Pledge of Allegiance
- Students will recite the Pledge of Allegiance to the flag of the United States of America one or more times each week.
- Any person who does not wish to participate in reciting the Pledge of Allegiance for any personal reason may elect not to do so. Students must respect another person’s right to make that choice.
- Students will also receive instruction in the proper etiquette toward, correct display of, and respect for the flag.
- For more information, read Board Policy 525: Pledge of Allegiance Policy.
- Occasionally, the school district uses surveys to obtain student opinions and information about students.
- Parents have the right to review the survey prior to administration and may choose to not have their child participate in the survey.
- For complete information on the rights of parents/guardians and eligible students about conducting surveys, collection and use of information for marketing purposes, and certain physical examinations, see Board Policy 585: Student Surveys & Guideline 585.1.
Video and Audio Recording
- All school buses used by the District may be equipped for the placement and operation of a video camera.
- The District may have signs informing riders that their conversations or actions may be recorded.
- The District may use a video recording of the actions of student passengers as evidence in any disciplinary action arising from student misconduct on the bus.
Places Other Than Buses
- The District buildings and grounds may be set up with video cameras.
- Video surveillance may occur in any District building or on any school district property.
- Video surveillance will not be used in bathrooms or locker rooms, although these areas may be placed under surveillance by individuals of the same sex as the occupants of the bathrooms or locker rooms.
For more information, read Board Policy 783: Video Surveillance.