Thursday, February 2, 2023


Palestinian advocates praise a new fact sheet on discrimination, Pennsylvania considers extending deadlines for abuse claims, and North Dakota's corporate farming debate affects landowners and tribes.


Vice President Kamala Harris urges Congress to pass the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act, the House begins the process to impeach the Homeland Security Secretary, and the Federal Reserve nudges interest rates up.


Is bird flu, inflation or price gouging to blame for astronomical egg prices? Pregnancy can be life-changing or life-ending depending on where you live, and nine tribal schools are transforming their outdoor spaces into community gathering areas.

SD Holds First Public Hearing in Social Studies Standards Debate


Tuesday, September 20, 2022   

A South Dakota education panel has kicked off the public-hearing phase in the state's latest effort to update social studies standards. Many perspectives were offered during Monday's meeting, including opposition from teachers.

In August, the state released proposed revisions for teaching history and civics, a year after the process was paused over the last-minute removal of several Native American references. A new but smaller working group drafted this year's plan, led by an official from a conservative college in Michigan.

Andrea Stanoscheck, a teacher at Lincoln Middle School in Yankton, said there was little representation from certified educators.

"The proposed standards committee only had 15 members, three of whom had current teaching certificates; that's 20%," Stanoscheck pointed out. "As you consider these standards, please ask yourself whether South Dakota values its teachers' expertise."

Other teachers said the proposed revisions focus too much on memorization of facts without much room for analysis. Some noted the content does not align with child development and will be too much for younger students to absorb. Supporters, including some parent activists, say there should be a greater emphasis on certain pointed, arguing too many Americans lack basic civics knowledge.

Kelsey Lovseth, an educator at Brookings High School, served on last year's standards review group, and said the public comments they examined expressed a desire for more diverse and streamlined curriculum with greater emphasis on current events. She said it did not happen this time.

"It is evident after extensive and thorough review of these proposed standards before you, that the will of South Dakota people has been ignored," Lovseth contended.

Both Lovseth and Stanoscheck are members of the South Dakota Education Association, which said the proposed standards deny students freedom to learn. State education leaders say despite concerns about the lack of critical thinking, teachers would have the ability to challenge students beyond learning facts.

The Board of Education Standards is expected to hold a handful of other public hearings in the coming months before deciding on the plan.

Disclosure: The South Dakota Education Association contributes to our fund for reporting on Education. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.

get more stories like this via email
Protestors at the University of California-Berkeley demonstrate in support of student groups that passed a bylaw pledging not to invite pro-Zionist speakers. (Palestine Legal)

Social Issues

Groups fighting for Palestinian rights are praising a new fact sheet on religious discrimination from the U.S. Department of Education's Office for …

Social Issues

Lawmakers and immigrants-rights activists in the Commonwealth are hoping to pass the Language Access and Inclusion Act, which would dramatically …


New U.S. Department of Agriculture rules will target fraud and increase oversight of the $64 billion-a-year organic food industry. In Iowa, the …

While mortality rates for pregnant women have decreased globally, they continue to rise in the United States, with Black women three times more likely to die during pregnancy than white women. (Inez/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

By Jennifer Weiss-Wolf for Ms. Magazine.Broadcast version by Eric Galatas for Colorado News Connection reporting for the Ms. Magazine-Public News …

Health and Wellness

With Black History Month underway, Wisconsin researchers and support groups are highlighting the disparities in cases of Alzheimer's disease…


Oregon is pursuing an aggressive climate plan to switch to renewable energy sources, but it faces one often overlooked issue: enough high-voltage …

Social Issues

A measure in the Washington State Legislature would provide free school meals to K-12 students, but nutrition service workers are worried they are …


Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021