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Social and Emotional Learning Innovation Grant recipients announced

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Thursday, Sept. 13, 2018

CONTACT: Mary Stadick Smith, South Dakota Department of Education, 605-773-7228, mary.stadicksmith@state.sd.us or

Ruth Raveling, South Dakota Department of Education, 605-773-2593, ruth.raveling@state.sd.us


Social and Emotional Learning Innovation Grant recipients announced

PIERRE, S.D. – The South Dakota Department of Education has awarded Social and Emotional Learning Innovation Grants to eight South Dakota public schools for a combined total of just over $1.1 million. The purpose of the grant program is to assist schools in implementing innovative, evidence-based interventions that foster students’ social and emotional learning, which encompasses self-awareness, self-management, relationship skills, social awareness and responsible decision making.


“When educators effectively connect with students and teach to the whole child, kids feel cared for and more engaged in their school communities,” said Interim Secretary of Education Mary Stadick Smith. “We want South Dakota students to graduate from South Dakota’s K-12 system ready for college, career and life. These grants are really aimed at that ‘life’ component of our aspiration.”


The following schools have been awarded grants:


  • Bennett County Middle School: $52,175
  • Chamberlain Middle School: $205,500
  • Eagle Butte Upper Elementary: $225,000
  • Elementary Immersion Center, Sioux Falls: $83,314
  • Hawthorne Elementary, Sioux Falls: $165,640
  • Hayward Elementary, Sioux Falls: $108,616
  • Laura B. Anderson Elementary, Sioux Falls: $183,278
  • Martin Grade School: $87,929


Schools will use the funds to implement new SEL interventions or to enhance current SEL interventions over a three-year period. Grant funding will also be used to train educators on topics like mindfulness and how to work with students dealing with trauma. Selected schools were invited to apply for these competitive grants.