ESEA Reauthorization: Where are we headed?
The Obama Administration has released its “blueprint” for ESEA reauthorization. What’s in it? This article summarizes some of the major concepts.

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Upcoming Events

Section 504 Training:
What you need to know

The Department of Education will host training regarding Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act as it pertains to preschool, elementary, middle and secondary programs. John Copenhaver will lead the training sessions.

With the recent passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments of 2009, there have been changes in Section 504 that school districts should be aware of.

Trainings will be held:
April 21, 9 a.m.-3 p.m., Sioux Falls
Holiday Inn City Center, Starlight Room

April 23, 9 a.m.-3 p.m., Rapid City
Rushmore Plaza Holiday Inn – Salon E (main floor)

Each recipient will receive copies of the updated South Dakota Section 504 Guidelines and related information.

Register online at by choosing the date of the training you wish to attend.

CTE Standards Alignment Workshop

What does moving to a standards-driven curriculum really mean for career and technical education instructors? Join in on a Standards Alignment Workshop, June 8, to evaluate your current offerings (program of study) and align your courses to the state’s CTE core standards.

By the end of the workshop, participants will have at least one course outline prepared for the 2010-11 school year with guidelines in structuring other courses. To qualify as an approved CTE program in South Dakota, local courses must align with state CTE core standards. Participants must bring course syllabi and/or unit outlines to the workshop.

The workshop runs 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. It will be held at Southeast Technical Institute in Sioux Falls. To register, visit and type in Session ID 44303.

Balanced Leadership Academy

The Balanced Leadership Academy focuses on leading change efforts in K-12 schools. A new cohort for superintendents and principals begins June 15-16 in the Black Hills. BLA is a joint effort of the School Administrators of South Dakota, Department of Education and University of South Dakota.

Cost is $400 for SASD members and $500 for non-members. Learn more at Applications must be received at SASD by April 16, 2010.

Healthier School Environment Training

Registration is now open for staff interested in improving the nutritional environment at their school or agency. Creating a Healthier School Environment is a one-week class offered at the South Dakota Child Nutrition Institute, June 20-25, in Sioux Falls. The Institute is held at Augustana College.

The class will cover funding and grant writing for nutrition-related projects, teamwork skills for school wellness committees, creative marketing ideas and nutrition resources.

Teachers may apply for 30 education contact hours after completion of the class. The class has a size limit and will be filled on a first-come, first-serve basis.

The Early Bird registration fee is $195 per person if registration form and payment are received by April 30. The regular registration fee is $235 per person. The deadline for registration is Friday, May 28.

For more information, visit or contact Janelle Peterson at (605) 773-2977.

SPED conference touches on topics for all teachers

With mental health, bullying and dyslexia as major topics of discussion, the first half of this year’s Special Education Programs and Transition Services Liaison Project summer conference will be beneficial for all educators. The conference is slated for June 21-25 at the Ramkota in Pierre.

The second half of the conference is geared more toward high school special education teachers and parents of high school students receiving special education services.

Teachers can attend one or both events. Participants can receive graduate credit for attending. Click here for more information.

K-3 Reading Summer School Academy

This event will take place July 12-16 at Jefferson Elementary in Pierre. Participants will be involved in a variety of activities focused around observing reading instruction from real teachers with real students during a summer school format.

Topics include: increasing active participation through management and engagement, explicit and direct instruction, Big 5, data and differentiation to target needs.

For more information or to register, visit and type in Session ID 44290. Undergraduate or graduate credit available.