June 12, 2013
The Honorable Melody Schopp
Secretary of Education
South Dakota Department of Education
800 Governors Drive
Pierre, SD 57501
Dear Secretary Schopp:
I am writing in response to the South Dakota Department of Education’s (SDDOE) request to amend its approved ESEA flexibility request. Following discussions between the U.S. Department of Education (ED) and your staff, regarding the proposed revisions to South Dakota’s approved request, ED has determined that the revised request continues to be consistent with principles of ESEA flexibility. For this reason, I am approving SDDOE’s amended request, which we will post on the ED’s website. A summary of SDDOE’s requested amendments is enclosed with this letter. Any further requests to amend SDDOE’s ESEA flexibility plan must be submitted to ED for review and approval.
SDDOE continues to have an affirmative responsibility to ensure that it and its districts are in compliance with Federal civil rights laws that prohibit discrimination based on race, color, national origin, sex, disability, and age in their implementation of ESEA flexibility, as well as their implementation of all other Federal education programs. These laws include Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Age Discrimination Act of 1975, and requirements under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act.
I am confident that SDDOE will continue to implement the reforms it proposed under its approved ESEA flexibility request and advance its efforts to hold schools and school districts accountable for the achievement of all students. If you have any questions regarding the implementation of your ESEA flexibility request, please do not hesitate to contact Emily Bank of my staff at: Emily.Bank@ed.gov
Deborah S. Delisle