DOE’s Director of Operations & Information gives an update on education-related bills

February is CTE month
Each February, students and teachers across South Dakota and the nation take time to recognize the value of career and technical education. As has become tradition in South Dakota, officers of the Career and Technical Student Organizations will visit the Capitol in Pierre next week to showcase CTE. >>>LEARN MORE

Legislature debates school sentinels, ESA funding
The 2013 legislative session is underway. Education committees have heard bills related to ESA funding (SB 76), and school sentinels, HB 1087. Click here to find the latest updates related to any 2013 billl, and for brief education-related updates, follow the South Dakota Department of Education on Twitter.

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Commission on Teaching and Learning launched

Educators from across South Dakota came together last month to look at the best strategies to support students and teachers in the classroom. Participants gathered in Fort Pierre and via technology at an event hosted by the South Dakota Education Association.

At the conclusion of the summit, SDEA President Sandy Arseneault announced the formation of a Commission on Teaching and Learning, which is a partnership of SDEA, the Associated School Boards of South Dakota, the School Administrators of South Dakota, and the South Dakota Department of Education. Arseneault said the Commission’s goal is to create a blueprint for quality instruction in South Dakota.

The commission’s first task will be to continue the work begun this past summer to develop model teacher and principal evaluation systems that districts may choose to use.

“Two work groups made significant progress this summer in developing evaluation systems that honor our teachers and principals as professionals and support them in their ongoing growth,” said South Dakota’s Secretary of Education Dr. Melody Schopp. “This new Commission would answer some final questions and wrap up this important work. Ultimately, then, districts would have valid state-recommended models that they could choose to implement locally.”

Both Arseneault and Schopp believe the collaborative effort will translate into positive things for students. “Through the commission, I hope we create a foundation for all stakeholders to come together to support positive student outcomes,” said Arseneault. “If we stay focused on the students, I know the Commission’s work will be valuable to our state.”