Governor Dennis Daugaard is supporting a constitutional amendment to separate technical schools from the k-12 education system. Amendment R also changes the state’s constitution allowing technical schools to be governed apart from the Board of Regents.
Governor Dennis Daugaard says Amendment R updates the state constitution to meet the demand for technical workers.
“This amendment is about strengthening our technical institutes. We need to modernize our state laws so that technical institutes can be as nimble as possible and remain on the cutting edge of job creation and job training,” says Daugaard.
Supporters of the measure say tech schools should be recognized as a separate education system. Greg Von Wald is the retired president of Mitchell Technical Institute. He says the measure gives tech schools the same access to funding and policy changes as the k-12 and university system.
“Amendment R is predicated on the premise that as South Dakota’s principles means of education and training skilled workers happens to be the technical institutes, that they must be recognized as a distinct and unique education entity within the state of South Dakota. That in order to solve the skill workforce shortages, the unique needs of our technical institutes should be a prime funding focus and focus of policy,” says Von Wald.
If the measure passes this fall, the Legislature will decide how to governor technical institutions.