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SD Department of Education May 2016  

  Big summer ahead for content standards review

State content standards are up for review in several areas this summer:

    • Math
    • English language arts
    • Oceti Sakowin Essential Understandings and standards
    • Health education
    • Six career and technical education career clusters

Work groups made up of K-12 and postsecondary educators, business and industry representatives and parents will begin meeting in June.

“This is a great opportunity to bring individuals together to discuss what’s working well with standards, where the challenges are and what changes can be made to address concerns,” said Becky Nelson, director of learning and instruction for the South Dakota Department of Education.

In the areas of math, English language arts, health education and OSEU, work groups will draft proposed standards this summer, then take feedback from school districts throughout the 2016-17 school year. The work groups will meet again in summer 2017 to consider feedback before preparing a final draft of proposed standards to bring before the state Board of Education in fall 2017. The standards will then have four public hearings over the course of the 2017-18 school year.

“We’re reviewing math and English language arts standards at the same time, but it’s important to remember implementation will be staggered,” Nelson said. “Teachers will be expected to be teaching to the revised English language arts standards in fall 2019 and to the revised math standards in fall 2020.”

This is the first time the Oceti Sakowin Essential Understandings and standards have been incorporated into the review cycle.

“It’s especially timely to add these standards to the review cycle with this year’s passage of legislation based on the work of the Native American Student Achievement Advisory Council,” said Mato Standing High, director of the office of Indian education. “There is great momentum for improving how we teach Native American history and culture not only to our state’s Native students, but to all students.”

In spring 2016, updated standards were adopted in several career and technical education career clusters. Work groups will examine standards in additional career clusters this summer, with four public hearings planned throughout the 2016-17 school year.

Follow the progress of this important work on the Department of Education website.

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