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Student Wellness and Supports

The goal of the South Dakota Department of Education is for all students to graduate college, career and life ready. The office of Student Wellness and Supports (OSWS) provides assistance and resources for all students to learn, thrive, and grow. OSWS strives to build strong connections and partnerships across South Dakota so educators can best support whole child needs involving social-emotional, academic, and career. Services are connected to Project Aware, PBIS, school counseling, SDMyLife, mental health, and more. OSWS helps students achieve success for the present and the future.

Poster Campaign

Mandatory Reporting

Child abuse and neglect reports are made by individuals and people from a variety of professions and organizations, including educators. Any person may make a report, however, South Dakota state law requires the mandatory reporters to report suspected child abuse and neglect as defined in SDCL 26-8A-3. To report child abuse or neglect, please call 877-244-0864. South Dakota Department of Social Services (DSS) Intake Specialists will be available 8am-5pm, Monday through Friday. If reporting an emergency situation before 8am, after 5pm, on the weekends, or during a holiday, please contact your local law enforcement.

Mental Health

This page provides a collection of resources and information related to mental health that may be of use to educators and the general public.

Go to Mental Health page

Mental Health Poster Campaign

The South Dakota Department of Education is providing free 8.5 x 11 clear, acrylic wall mount sign holders for your school district to use in your restrooms to provide helpful mental health information and resources for your middle and high school students. The department will create the signs and post them on our website for you to print.

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Project Aware

The South Dakota Department of Education was awarded a Project AWARE grant from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). The grant is a partnership with the South Dakota Department of Social Services - Division of Behavioral Health. The departments are partnering with school districts and community mental health centers to improve access to mental health services, train educational professionals, increase family and community awareness, and help youth develop healthy behavioral skills and mental wellness.

Go to Project AWARE page

Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports

Positive behavioral interventions and supports (PBIS) is comprised of a broad range of systemic school-wide, group, and individualized strategies for achieving important social and learning outcomes while preventing problem behavior with all students.

Go to Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports page

School Counseling

As part of the education team, school counselors foster development in career, academic and social/emotional areas for all students.

Go to School Counseling page

School Safety

South Dakota schools strive to provide a safe and healthy learning environment for students. Below are some resources schools can use to take steps to plan for these potential emergencies through the creation of a school Emergency Operations Plan.

Go to School Safety page


With the support of teachers, counselors, and parents, SDMyLife's goal is to help students better understand themselves and how their interest, skills, and knowledge relate to real-world academic and career opportunities.

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Soft Skills

Soft skills are character and personality traits that reflect how you work in general, with others, and by yourself.

Go to Soft Skills page

Questions? Contact (605) 773-3423 or view OSWS contact list.