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Discount education for South Dakota school counselors advances

A bill to give school counselors discounted tuition in South Dakota universities has advanced from the House Education Committee.

SB 1 would provide half-off undergrad and graduate-level tuition for up to six credit hours a year.

The proposal is framed both to entice more counselors to work in South Dakota and to continue education for those already employed.

Doug Wermedal is executive director of the state's Associated School Boards. He said these services are difference-makers for students.

“Whether that’s career and vocational technical education, as additional preparation for South Dakota’s needs, or whether it’s for university degrees," Wermedal said. "Each of these outcomes is something school counselors shape.”

It advanced to the House floor Wednesday with a do pass recommendation.

C.J. Keene is a Rapid City-based journalist covering the legal system, education, and culture