The Richardton-Taylor Public School District is located right off of I-94, just 22 miles from Dickinson. In his twelfth year at Richardton-Taylor, Superintendent Brent Bautz beams when talking about the positive growth that the school system has had in the past decade with the support of the local communities.
In 2007-2008, the school district was in a state of declining enrollment. Then, the oil boom happened, increasing their enrollment, which they have been able to maintain ever since. On top of that, the Richardton-Taylor School District was able to build a new high school in 2016. The original school was built in 1961. Due to the aging school with major structural issues including concrete blocks, support beams, and walls that are cracking, Bautz knew that the school had outlived its life expectancy; that the upgrades needed were no longer just cosmetic but potentially life-threatening to the students and faculty.
The school district seems to be thriving with the help of the community and its many business supporters. Bautz mentioned that Dakota Community Bank & Trust (DCB&T) has assisted in upgrading the school’s gymnasium scoreboards and shot clocks for the boys and girls basketball teams, construction of the crow’s nest, supplies for school-related events, playground at Taylor’s elementary school, and donations to speech and music trips. DCB&T also purchased the curriculum for their high school financial literacy class that is housed online. Along with the financial contributions, DCB&T’s employees also volunteer on various parent groups including booster club, music groups, curriculum committee and more. “Dakota Community Bank & Trust is really involved in the community and they take pride in helping the community grow. The name says it all. Dakota Community Bank means they are part of the community. They are willing to grow with the community and help support the community,” mentioned Bautz.
With all of the accomplishments Richardton-Taylor Public School made in recent years, Bautz is most proud of the construction of the new school. He continued, “All of these changes are helping the community grow and helping the community be successful. When you have visitors coming to your neck of the woods, it’s nice to have some amenities that are nice, clean, working and safe.”
In the last five years, the Richardton-Taylor School District established their core values using a team of people including parents, school board members, teachers, and administrators. To go hand-in-hand with the school’s mission to empower students for the future, they were able to solidify five key values that they try to operate by. Those values are: honesty, integrity, accountability, growth and teamwork.
Bautz looks ahead positively to the future. With bus routes in place bringing students from Gladstone and beyond, “Right now we are just about maxed out, depending on which classrooms new kids would be coming into. We are maintaining where we are at and even possibly seeing more.”
For more information on how the Richardton-Taylor School District prepares and empowers students for the future, visit: http://www.richardton-taylor.k12.nd.us/.
Written by Lindsey Hefta, Marketing Director