South Dakota Department of Education has included Vermillion School District as one of four schools in the state to participate in the State Scholars Initiative Grant. The State has been awarded a $300,000 grant to implement this initiative over two years. Other schools included in this initiative are Sturgis, Sisseton, and Wagner. The general goal of the State Scholars Initiative is designed to increase the number of students who take a rigorous high school curriculum. SSI core classes closely resemble those required under South Dakota's new graduation requirements.
"This initiative makes that important connection between academics and careers," stated Governor Mike Rounds. "It helps young people understand the importance of planning for their future, and it encourages them to take the rigorous courses they need to be successful as they continue their education and enter the workforce." Implementation of this business and education partnership is part of the Governor's 2010 Education Initiative. The South Dakota State Chamber of Commerce and Industry worked in association with the Department of Education to submit this grant proposal.
SSI provides support to help students succeed while pursuing rigorous core course requirements. Business leaders will be invited into the classroom to talk about the real-world value of a challenging curriculum. Through this program, students develop personal learning plans based on individual academic and career goals. The initiative will provide support for our current Pathways To Success program that is focused on the career clusters and personal learning plans.