• The U.S. Department of Education announced its “ESEA Flexibility” package late last month. South Dakota plans to apply for a waiver. Learn More. »

• American Education Week is Nov. 13-19. Plan now to celebrate public education in your district.
Learn More. »

• South Dakota has become a “Governing State” in the SMARTER Balanced Consortium. The collection of about 30 states is developing next-generation assessments aligned to the Common Core.
Learn More. »

• Teachers of the Year from across the state will be honored at a banquet during the Systems Change Conference. The 2012 SD Teacher of the Year will be announced that night.
Learn More. »

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U.S. Ed recognizes National Blue Ribbon Schools

Three South Dakota schools – Avon Elementary, Hamlin Junior High and Sharon F. Delzer Elementary in Estelline – are among the 304 schools nationwide named as 2011 Blue Ribbon Schools. Each year, the U.S. Department of Education recognizes National Blue Ribbon Schools for 1) overall academic excellence or 2) for their success in closing achievement gaps.

The schools will be honored at a conference and awards ceremony Nov. 14-15 in Washington, D.C.

“America’s long-term economic prosperity and civic engagement depends on our children receiving a world-class education,” Secretary of Education Arne Duncan said. “National Blue Ribbon Schools are committed to accelerating student achievement and preparing students for success in college and careers. Their success is an example for others to follow.”

The National Blue Ribbon Schools Program honors public and private schools based on one of two criteria: 1) Schools whose students are high performing. These are schools ranked among each state’s highest performing schools as measured by their performance on state assessments or, in the case of private schools, that score at the highest performance level on nationally normed tests; or 2) Schools with at least 40 percent of their students from disadvantaged backgrounds that improve student performance to high levels as measured by the school’s performance on state assessments or nationally-normed tests. The

schools are invited by the secretary of education to submit an application for possible recognition as a National Blue Ribbon School.

Click here to see a complete list of 2011 National Blue Ribbon Schools.