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Secretary of Education Melody Schopp to Retire



            Office of Gov. Dennis Daugaard

500 E. Capitol Ave.

Pierre, S.D. 57501






FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:  Friday, October 13, 2017

CONTACT:  Tony Venhuizen or Kelsey Pritchard at 605-773-3212



Secretary of Education Melody Schopp to Retire


PIERRE, S.D. – Gov. Dennis Daugaard announced today that Dr. Melody Schopp, Secretary of Education, will retire in December.


Schopp has served as Secretary of Education since 2011 and has been with the Department of Education since 2000.


“Melody Schopp cares about kids, and that has motivated her throughout her entire career,” said Gov. Daugaard. “She has served in a difficult and high-profile job, and I’ve appreciated her leadership, from higher teacher salaries to more work-based opportunities for young people. I wish Melody the very best in the future.”


Schopp’s retirement ends a 40-year career in public education in South Dakota. After teaching for one year in North Dakota, Schopp taught for 23 years in the Lemmon School District, where she was a pioneer of bringing the internet into the classroom. 


Gov. Bill Janklow invited Schopp to join the Department of Education in 2000 as a technology integrationist, and she was subsequently promoted to director of teacher certification and accountability, and then to deputy secretary. In 2011, Gov. Daugaard appointed her to be Secretary of Education. Schopp is completing a one-year term as national president of the Council of Chief State School Officers.


“It has been an honor to serve in Gov. Daugaard’s administration and to work on behalf of the young people in our state,” said Secretary Schopp. “I am most proud of the work we did to increase teacher pay in South Dakota.”


Schopp’s last day as Secretary will be Dec. 15.