Ed Online Homepage

PD Events

Letter from the Secretary

DOE Homepage
SD Department of Education May 2015  
Letter from the Secretary
When you were little, did your jaw drop whenever you ran into one of your teachers outside of school? As children, it doesn’t seem to occur to us that teachers have lives beyond the classroom. Seeing a teacher out in the community can feel like a celebrity encounter.

We don’t lose that sense of awe when we grow up either. Think of the first time you talked to a former teacher after you graduated high school. Did you get tongue-tied wondering if you dare use his or her first name?

Teacher Appreciation Week is May 4-8. I hope you take time to celebrate all teachers during this special week—those in your schools today, and those in your life, past and present. There’s a reason we grow up admiring our teachers. It’s not because they’re really celebrities (though I think the world would be a better place if they were). It’s because they encourage us, mold us and inspire us. Teaching is an honorable profession.

The Blue Ribbon Task Force on Teachers and Students has officially begun its work. I’ve had the opportunity to attend several initial listening sessions with various groups of educators. These sessions are the first step in the process and will take place through May.

Beginning in June, larger public meetings will be held across the state. The task force now has a website at http://blueribbon.sd.gov where you can submit feedback, find a meeting schedule and more.

I am also pleased to report that the first meeting of the Native American Student Achievement Council was held April 28-29, in Pierre. You can follow this group’s work here: http://indianeducation.sd.gov/NASAAC.aspx

Thank you for all you do for South Dakota students. Enjoy the end of the school year!
Reader survey
We want the Ed Online to be a useful resource for you. Please fill out this brief survey so we can better serve your information needs.

Go to https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/BB66GY5 to take survey.

Update Personnel Record Form by June 12

The Personnel Record Form database is open, and the deadline to make changes is June 12. As the Department of Education plans for the release of the state Report Card, it is important to be sure information in the PRF database is updated to reflect the most accurate information for your district.

PRF Timeline

May 15 —Praxis tests taken and passed after May 15 will not be received in time for teachers to be considered highly qualified. ETS has added additional locations for computer-delivered (http://www.ets.org/praxis/register?WT.ac=praxis_25888_register_computer_140610) testing in Aberdeen, Huron, and Vermillion, plus existing locations in Rapid City and Sioux Falls. This will allow more options for individuals who need to pass a Praxis test in order to be considered highly qualified.

June 9 —Review the Highly Qualified reports for all staff to ensure accuracy.

June 12 —The PRF database closes for the summer.
    - Note: This is a change from prior years when it closed June 30.

Areas of the PRF to review and update

• Non-Authorized Position Code. The system does not automatically update the PRF to indicate a person is highly qualified after he or she passes the Praxis exam. If staff take and pass the Praxis test, districts will need to manually switch the person’s position code from non-authorized to “elementary school teacher,” “middle school teacher,” or “high school teacher” so the system can deem them highly qualified.

• Employee who is no longer a staff person after working the first part of the school year. If a staff person quit after the first part of the school year, districts will need to update his or her information. Do NOT change a person’s record to reflect No Longer Employed. This will be done next year in the 2015-16 database. Districts should open each assignment and update the quarters or trimesters a person actually worked at the school. Also update salary (if required) to reflect what was paid based on time worked.

• New Employee. If a staff person was employed after the database was closed in October, add the staff person to the appropriate area of the PRF. The FTE and salary should reflect time worked.

• Plans of Intent. Review each Plan of Intent. If the person has completed the requirements, the Plan Status will show as Completed.

• Bus Drivers. If a district employs or contracts with a bus driver who had not taken the required Annual Training before the PRF closed, but has since taken that training, the district should update the driver’s record.

• Program Reviews. If you have had a Program Review since the PRF closed, and you have information on the PRF that needs to be updated, you may do this now.

• Other Areas of the PRF. Review each area of the PRF to ensure data is accurate. A number of edit checks were completed on the data, but there can still be something which was not identified as a problem.

• Assurance Statement. The Assurance Statement does not need to be completed at this time.

Contact Jantina Nelson-Stastny, Department of Education, at (605) 668-2904 or Jantina.Nelson-Stastny@state.sd.us with questions.

Every Child Achieves Act on way to US Senate floor
The federal Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee has voted unanimously, 22-0, to approve the Every Child Achieves Act of 2015. This act is a proposed solution to reauthorization of No Child Left Behind and the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. To learn more about the proposal, click on the links below.
    • Press release (http://www.help.senate.gov/newsroom/press/release/?id=ea02ba4f-5fe5-4443-8345-cf7ea73998e5&groups=Ranking)
    • Bill summary (http://www.help.senate.gov/imo/media/The_Every_Child_Achieves_Act_of_2015--summary.pdf)
    • Bill draft (http://www.help.senate.gov/imo/media/S_EveryChildAchievesActof2015.pdf)

Reminder: Teacher Evaluation District Self-Reflection Form due June 30
All public school districts are required to complete a District Self-Reflection Form by June 30, 2015. This form is similar to the 2014-15 Gap Analysis Plan that districts previously completed. The purpose of this document is to provide the South Dakota Department of Education with information about districts’ Teacher Effectiveness efforts in the 2014-15 school year and how districts plan to implement the system in the 2015-16 school year.

To assist districts in completing this form, Matt Gill, Department of Education, has forwarded each district their Self-Reflection Form (with their Gap Analysis Plan from the 2014-15 school year included). This form should be completed and returned to Matt by June 30, 2015, at Matthew.Gill@state.sd.us.

Principal Evaluation

• Principal Effectiveness workshops scheduled this summer
Trainings on the Principal Effectiveness model will be held across the state the week of June 15. The purpose is to assist superintendents and principals in selecting domains and components, as well as evidence and artifacts, that support Principal Effectiveness.

Additionally, the training will include time to complete the required Principal Effectiveness Gap Analysis and Planning Guide (see related story below), which is due June 30, 2015. The Principal Effectiveness trainings in November 2014 provided an overview of the model; this summer’s trainings will provide in-depth implementation guidance.

Training Dates

June 15, Spearfish
June 16, Pierre
June 17, Watertown
June 18, Sioux Falls
June 19, Mitchell

Go to https://southdakota.gosignmeup.com/Public/Course/Browse to register. Search by course title. Contact Matt Gill (Matthew.Gill@state.sd.us) at the South Dakota Department of Education, (605) 773-8193, with questions.

• District Gap Analysis and Planning Guide due June 30
With the decision to use the 2015-16 school year as a learning year for Principal Effectiveness, all districts need to complete the Principal Effectiveness Gap Analysis and Planning Guide. This guide identifies statutory and regulatory requirements for principal evaluation in South Dakota and provides an opportunity for districts to plan for successful implementation. The completed document should be emailed to Matt Gill (Matthew.Gill@state.sd.us) by June 30, 2015.

Blue Ribbon Task Force website goes live
A website dedicated to the Blue Ribbon Task Force on Teachers and Students has been launched at http://blueribbon.sd.gov. Items such as meeting schedules, resources and research will be posted here as they become available.
SD public universities to use Smarter Balanced scores as part of placement
South Dakota high school students who take the Smarter Balanced assessment could enter postsecondary institutions and use their scores for placement in credit-bearing courses. All six public universities in the state will use high school scores as evidence that students are ready for entry-level, credit-bearing courses and may be exempted from remedial courses. Using Smarter Balanced scores is an option for students. Public universities will accept the scores, but not require them.

Smarter Balanced scores will also be used to identify students who are ready for accelerated options such as dual credit.

"Our alignment of Smarter Balanced scores from the 11th grade assessment will assist the regental system in its continued collaboration with the South Dakota Department of Education to reduce the number of students who require remedial coursework when they arrive at one of our six public four-year institutions,” said Jack Warner, executive director and CEO of the South Dakota Board of Regents. “Additionally, as we expand dual credit offerings in the state, the assessment will be a useful tool for placing students into credit-bearing coursework during their senior year."

In total, nearly 200 colleges and universities in six states will be using Smarter Balanced scores for placement purposes. Go to http://www.smarterbalanced.org/news/close-200-colleges-universities-use-smarter-balanced-scores-part-placement/ for more information.
Feds release further guidance on education of English language learners
The U.S. Department of Education has issued Chapter 2 (http://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/oela/english-learner-toolkit/chap2.pdf) of guidance to assist districts and public schools in meeting their legal obligations to ensure English language learners can participate meaningfully and equally in educational programs and services. The South Dakota Department of Education will be hosting a webinar on this topic May 12. See Upcoming Events for more information.
JAG students gather in Mitchell for Career Development Conference

JAG (Jobs for America’s Graduates) students from Andes Central, Bennett County, Todd County and Wagner Community school districts gathered recently in Mitchell for a Career Development Conference. Students toured the campuses of Dakota Wesleyan University and Mitchell Technical Institute, participated in a junk build activity, and competed in employability skills, public speaking and mathematics.

Winners of the skills competitions are as follows:

1st place: Ashton Zephier (Wagner)
2nd: Chase Zephier (Wagner)
3rd: James Nelson (Bennett County)

1st: Nicole Goetzinger (Bennett County)
2nd: Brycen Zephier (Wagner)
3rd: Chloe Tiger (Wagner)

Public speaking
1st: Kaitlyn Hellman (Bennett County)
2nd: A'Laura Cole (Bennett County)
3rd: Shakoya Claussen (Bennett County)

Skills competition winners. Back row l to r: Brycen Zephier, Ashton Zephier, Chase Zephier, Shakoya Claussen, James Nelson. Front row l to r: Kaitlyn Hellman, A'Laura Cole, Nicole Goetzinger, Chloe Tiger.

Students collaborate in a junk build activity
SD Director of Indian Education honored as a founder of American Indian College Fund
Dr. Lowell Amiotte was honored recently as the American Indian College Fund celebrated its 25th Anniversary. More than 210 attendees gathered as the College Fund honored 10 of its original founders at the event to benefit its mission to provide Native American access to higher education.

Read more at http://www.collegefund.org/press/detail/312.
Upcoming Events

Complete listing of events available at: http://southdakota.gosignmeup.com.

Good & Healthy South Dakota Schools webinar series
Available online until June 10

The School Health Program in the South Dakota Departments of Education and Health announces this free webinar series. The target audiences for these recorded webinars are those responsible for physical education curriculum and instruction in South Dakota schools.

Each of the three webinars is approximately 50-60 minutes in length and is available through June 10, 2015. The webinars must be viewed in their entirety and in the recommended sequence. Go to http://www.doe.sd.gov/schoolhealth/newsletter/2015/documents/WebinarDe.pdf for a description of each of the webinars.

Participants who complete the webinar series and submit the participant feedback form and the necessary reimbursement forms will be eligible for a $75 rebate. The link to the webinars will be emailed to participants at the email address provided in the online registration. Hard copies of the featured resources, the participant feedback form and the reimbursement forms will be mailed to participants.

Go to https://apps.sd.gov/Applications/DE49TrnTracker/Secure/AvailableClasses.aspx to register.

For more information, contact Karen Keyser at Karen.keyser@state.sd.us or (605) 220-6453.

English Language Learners-School Districts’ Responsibilities for ELL Programs
May 12, online

This webinar will be held 10-11:30 a.m. CDT, and again 2-3:30 p.m. CDT. It is designed for superintendents, principals and federal program directors.

Go to http://southdakota.gosignmeup.com/ to register. Search by course title. Contact Yutzil Becker (Yutzil.Becker@state.sd.us) at the South Dakota Department of Education, (605) 773-4698, with questions.

Board of Education meeting
May 18, Aberdeen

The South Dakota Board of Education will hold its regularly scheduled meeting at Northern State University, Student Center, Centennial Room, 1200 S. Jay St., in Aberdeen. The time of the meeting is yet to be determined. Public hearings will be held related to content standards adoption in the areas of science, social studies, fine arts and K-12 educational technology. An agenda will be posted at http://boardsandcommissions.sd.gov/Template.aspx?id=32 at least 24 hours in advance of the meeting.

Advanced Data Use Skills for Educators
June 1-July 15, online

Advanced Data Use Skills for Educators, a new online course available this summer, will build upon skills taught in the prerequisite course, Fundamentals of Using Data for Educators. Participants will apply fundamental skills to an individual project using data.

Course requirements include readings, participation in online discussions and completion of a data project, with the goal of using data to answer important questions to drive positive change in a district, school or classroom.

The course is scheduled for June 1-July 15, with the data project due July 15. Participation is free. Two credits are available through the University of South Dakota for $40/credit.

Register at https://southdakota.gosignmeup.com. Search by course title. For those wishing to receive credit, there will be an additional link on this website where participants can register with USD.

2015 Summer Education Conference: Multi-Tiered System of Supports
June 3-4, Pierre

This conference is open to all schools, with a reduced registration rate available for educators from MTSS schools. Graduate credit is available.

The first day of the conference will focus on teaching students to think critically about text. School-wide Positive Behavior Supports will be the main topic of day two. Keynote speakers will be Jill Jackson and Dr. George Sugai.

For more information and to register, go to doe.sd.gov/oess/documents/15ConfMTS.pdf.

Questions? Contact Becky Cain, South Dakota Department of Education, at rebecca.cain@state.sd.us or (605) 280-3568.

Multi-Hazard Emergency Planning for Schools
June 3-4, Madison

This course is offered by the South Dakota Office of Emergency Management and is designed to help participants recognize the need to plan for all types of disaster. Since planning is a process, planning is included in every unit and activity. Participants completing the course will be able to explain the importance of a school safety program to others and to lead individuals in their schools and community through the process of developing an effective multi-hazard program.

This course will:

• Describe emergency management operations, roles and duties

• Explain how to assess potential hazards that schools may face

• Explain how to develop and test an Emergency Operations Plan that addresses
   all potential hazards.

To register, go to http://www.eventbrite.com/e/g362-multi-hazard-emergency-planning-for-schools-madison-tickets-15621339848.

Civil Rights Regulations: Target - Education Settings
June 9, Rapid City
June 10, Mitchell
June 11, Sioux Falls

The South Dakota Department of Education is working with the U.S. Department of Education to provide professional development on civil rights federal regulations for the educational setting. These will be full-day sessions featuring specialists from the regional U.S. Department of Education Office for Civil Rights in Kansas City, Mo. The OCR ensures equal access to education and promotes educational excellence throughout the nation through enforcement of civil rights laws.

Maria North and Karl Menninger will lead the trainings. They are Supervisory Attorneys for the OCR. Each oversees a team of investigators and attorneys who provide technical assistance and investigate civil rights issues in education.

K-12 staff and postsecondary personnel are encouraged to attend. Attendees will receive six hours of CEUs for full-day attendance. Please advise staff who serve in any of the following capacities about these trainings:

• School administrator
• School counselor
• Career and technical education teacher/director
• School district attorney
• Title IX coordinator
• Section 504 coordinator

Federal law requires that each school district have at least one person designated and trained as the District Title IX Coordinator and a person designated as the Section 504 Coordinator. (§ 34 C.F.R. Sec. 106.8 and Sec. 104.7)

Contact Carol Uecker at the South Dakota Department of Education, (605) 773-4771 or Carol.Uecker@state.sd.us, with any questions.

To register, go to http://southdakota.gosignmeup.com/. Search by course title.

Principal Effectiveness In-Depth Implementation Guidance
June 15, Spearfish
June 16, Pierre
June 17, Watertown
June 18, Sioux Falls
June 19, Mitchell

Trainings on the Principal Effectiveness model will be held across the state the week of June 15. The purpose is to assist superintendents and principals in selecting domains and components, as well as evidence and artifacts, that support Principal Effectiveness. Districts are encouraged to sign up and attend as teams.

Additionally, the training will include time to complete the required Principal Effectiveness Gap Analysis and Planning Guide (see related story at http://doe.sd.gov/pressroom/educationonline/2015/May/HotTopic4.html), which is due June 30, 2015. The Principal Effectiveness trainings in November 2014 provided an overview of the model; this summer’s trainings will provide in-depth implementation guidance.

Go to http://southdakota.gosignmeup.com/ to register. Search by course title. Contact Matt Gill (Matthew.Gill@state.sd.us) at the South Dakota Department of Education, (605) 773-8193, with questions.

Northern Plains Law Conference on Students with Disabilities
Sept. 22-23, Rapid City

This is a new conference that will cover special education legal issues, including the latest information from due process hearings, circuit court cases, OSEP/OCR (Office of Special Education Programs/Office of Civil Rights) guidance letters, and basic IDEA (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act) procedural requirements. It is designed for general/special education staff, administrators, state/school district attorneys, state education department staff, related services staff, parents, and other stakeholders.

For more information and to register, go to http://www.cvent.com/d/4rq15w.

Save the Date: 2015 Indian Education Summit
Nov. 1-3, Pierre

Details at http://indianeducation.sd.gov/summit.aspx.

State Home Page | Disclaimer | Accessibility | Privacy Policy
©2015 S.D. Department of Education, 800 Governors Drive, Pierre, SD 57501 - (605) 773-3134