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Letters from the Board
A message from the Riverdale School Board and AdministrationPosted by Riverdale School Board on 11/17/2020
A message from the Riverdale School Board and Administration
Dear Riverdale Community,
Last night, Board Director Carrie Banks shared the following message at the Nov. 16 Riverdale School Board Meeting:
Formal complaints were brought forward over the summer highlighting concerns related to our high school. These complaints were specific to our high school administrative response to incidents of racism, bullying and harassment, and culture at the school. Over the summer, our former superintendent reviewed the complaints, informed our former high school principal that they had been filed and moved forward in response through a private review and report.
The Hungerford Law Firm hired Dawn Strong to conduct an independent review of the complaints on behalf of Riverdale School District. This process was completed on Nov. 2, 2020. The resulting report shares information showing an urgent need for our district to expect and require future response to incidents be handled thoroughly and in compliance with the new All Students Belong guidance from the Oregon Department of Education. To protect the identity of the minors involved, a thorough condensation of the report will be available for public review.
We are committed to this work. Moving forward, we are committed to proactive anti-racist, anti-bullying teaching and learning and to ensuring a safe environment for our students to report incidents of harm and see necessary action taken. We are committed to learning from the information brought forward, to healing, and to moving forward in a productive, thorough manner with student confidentiality, rights and voices central to action taken. Our interim superintendent and new high school principal have also spent hours listening to the Bride family and their hurt and loss of their son Carson. We continue to actively and urgently address the school culture through multiple avenues. Thank you for bringing your concerns forward. We are committed to conversation, growth and improvement for the benefit of Riverdale students, staff and community.
Below is a list of actions taken, though not exhaustive, in response to these serious concerns and in commitment to growth and improvement:
Active Equity and Inclusion Teams at each school and the district level
Creation of a new position Equity and Inclusion Coordinator and Restorative Justice Coach
Professional development - at the beginning of the school year for all K-12 employees and ongoing
Ongoing consultation and partnership (for staff and students) with Public Speaker and Author Wjuana Montgomery focusing on building an ongoing culture of belonging
Curriculum review including a launch of EverFi Curriculum
Weekly use of restorative circles in HS Advisory to develop community norms and habits of respect and kindness
Teaching students how to report incidents using SafeOregon
Our new HS principal and HS counselor are intentionally creating a culture of care in alignment with the All Students Belong guidance from ODE.
Board to review Adi Act Board Policy at December Board Meeting
Partnership with YouthLine in Advisory classes at Riverdale High School
We are steadfast in our commitment and invite your partnership and teamwork as a community as we learn and grow together.
Riverdale School Board and Administration
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