Saturday, November 3, 2012
Teacher Kathy Luebbe responds to a Letter to the Editor written by resident Molly Illes.
Saturday, November 3, 2012
Dear Ms. Illes, I appreciate your support of Sheridan Hills Elementary School. As a teacher at the Richfield Dual Language School, I must say that your son would have flourished in our school as well. He would have done well at the R-STEM School or Centennial School. I am proud to be a Richfield teacher. It is always good to hear the truth of how hard our teachers and support staff and leaders work to deliver quality instruction. Why? It is because our mission statement gives us the reason: we are building life-longer learners. I am pleased that you have found this to be true for your son. Please affirm our district by voting YES for both referendums on November 6 and encouraging all your friends who are Richfield residents to do the …
Wednesday, October 31, 2012
Retired Richfield Public Schools Superintendent Barbara Devlin asks voters to support the measure in the following Letter to the Editor.
Wednesday, October 31, 2012
To the Editor: As a Richfield resident and former Superintendent (1995 – 2008), I am writing this letter to urge your support for the Richfield School District operating levy. This levy request is fully justified following three years of no increase in State funding, and just under $5.5 million in budget cutbacks over the past decade. Two questions will be on the ballot: Question #1: Renew expiring levies to maintain existing programs. An operating levy approved by voters in 2002 is expiring. This levy provides $301.40 per pupil in annual operating revenue that the district uses to maintain current educational programs for students. Voting “Yes” on this ballot question would simply extend an existing property tax and would not result in …
Thursday, September 27, 2012
Resident Molly Illes believes the proposed referendum must pass this fall.
Editor's Note: The following letter was submitted by resident Molly Illes. Dear Richfield citizens, Two years ago when my son started kindergarten at a high-performing, 93% white, language immersion school, we were all thrilled. He was quickly becoming proficient in a foreign language and soaking up the culture. Over the course of two years, I ignored the chaos in the incredibly cluttered hallways and disarray in the classroom as I dropped my children off in their classrooms. However, last year when my son relayed story after story about racial and sexist remarks from one child to another child in his classroom, it upset him. He intervened on the bi-racial girl's behalf. It's what we've taught him to do. The adults who should have taken …
Thursday, September 13, 2012
The Richfield City Council granted a conditional use permit for the lights and other field upgrades Tuesday night.
Richfield High School will now be able to offer night baseball game options to its athletic conference and local program users this coming spring. The Richfield City Council unanimously granted a conditional use permit Tuesday night, allowing builders to move forward with installing lights and adding a variety of accessory upgrades. Among the upgrades are a new backstop, bleachers, a concession area, press box and making the fields handicap accessible. While the community was seemingly happy to be getting a revamped field, the lights portion caused a bit of controversy throughout the early part of the summer. Opponents of the lights felt the money could be better spent in classrooms, while proponents felt the total revamp of the field …
Tuesday, July 17, 2012
Richfield Patch editor, Caitlin Burgess, attempts to answer some questions about the schools' financial system.
After the controversy over the installation of field lights on the high school baseball field, I was asked many questions about school finance. And, well, to be perfectly honest—I didn’t know much. So I met with the schools’ business manager, Michael Schwartz, and he helped me piece together a synopsis on how the district makes its money and how it is spent. Where The Money Comes From The schools receive funding from sources under four categories: the state, local levies (property taxes), federal government and grants, and rentals, fees and investments. Schwartz estimated that state aid for most school districts is around 65 to 75 percent. “The bulk of any district’s funding would be state aid, for sure,” Schwartz said. “While property tax…
Tuesday, December 6, 2011
As required by state law, on Monday night the Richfield School District presented an explanation of property taxes and how they benefit local schools.
The Richfield School Board’s first regular meeting in December 2011 featured the annual truth-in-taxation report presented by Michael Schwartz, the district's business manager. Required by Minnesota law, the truth-in-taxation report summarized the various voter- and state-approved levies responsible for funding operations in the Richfield Public Schools District, which in 2011-12 is estimated to have an overall expenditure budget of approximately $60.5 million. Due to the state’s recent repeal of the market value homestead credit, more of Richfield’s property taxes—29 percent of which go directly to funding Richfield public schools—will be paid directly by residents, rather than the state. Truth in Taxation and its Meaning for Richfield …
Friday, November 11, 2011
The three newly elected Richfield School Board members are puzzled and disappointed.
While newly elected Richfield School Board members Deb Etienne, John Ashmead and incumbent Todd Nollenberger are ecstatic to be part of the board, all are also upset the referendum failed to pass. "My victory is kind of bittersweet because of it," Ashmead told Richfield Patch. "I don’t think people are disgruntled with the schools. I think they just don’t have the money." While Nollenberger agreed the economy may have been a factor, he was surprised the measure didn't pass. The district conducted two surveys, one in fall 2010 and the other this past spring, to gain insight on whether voters would support a levy. Nollenberger cited results showing roughly 65-percent support, including strong support among seniors. "To be perfectly honest, …
Thursday, November 10, 2011
A Richfield resident reports an election judge after she says he voiced his opinion on the proposed school referendum.
As Ellen Ruiters stood in line to vote Tuesday morning at the Sheridan Hills precinct, she hoped turnout would be good. *After she cast her vote, she asked a nearby election judge whether the morning had brought many voters in, and the judge said it had been fairly steady. Ruiters continued the casual conversation, saying to the judge, “Well, we really need to have people come out and vote for this referendum.” Once these words escaped her lips, what seemed like the start of random chit-chat soon turned into a heated discussion. Ruiters got an unexpected earful from the election judge, an unnamed man, who told Ruiters he felt the referendum shouldn’t be passed. According to Ruiters, the judge told her he was on a fixed income and, thus, …