Director's Message
Office of Title VI Indian Education:
Meet Angel Lee, New Title VI Indian Education Manager
Angel Lee, Cheyenne River Lakota, comes from the Itázipčho, Mnikȟówožu, Húŋkpapȟa, Iháŋkthuŋwaŋ bands of Očeti Šakówin, She has over 20 years’ experience working in Indigenous Education, Secondary Education, integrating Indigenous Lakota Knowledge/Language and Western science, continuous school improvement, accreditation, data analysis, and 21st Century Learning. She has served at the tribal college, K-12, tribal, and federal education agency levels across her homelands on Cheyenne River.

Angel earned both a Baccalaureate of Science, Biology, and teaching credentials from Northern State University, Master of Arts in Education Administration and Lakota Leadership and Management. She is certified as both an Advanced Teacher and Advanced Administrator (K-12 Principal).

Ms. Lee, Doctoral Student at Johns Hopkins University School of Education, has focused her research on entrepreneurial leadership, equity, inclusivity and cultural responsiveness, particularly in the realm of Indigenous education systems. Her leadership of culturally responsive 21st Century Learning has served as a model for other systems seeking to include Indigenous identity, language, culture, traditional arts, and history in their educational systems. Her original lesson designs of integrating Lakota language, culture and history with her research in biochemistry (SDSM&T) and optical engineering (Arizona State University) have been showcased nationally.

E- Learning Friday Cultural Events
E - Learning Friday Cultural Events
Every E-Learning Friday starting in October, we have had a different virtual online cultural event on the Rapid City Title VI Indian Education's FB page. Coming up this month:

  • Dec. 4th Evans Flammond Sr. - Oceti Sakowin Art at Home Part 2

  • Dec. 11th Nikkole Bostnar - Youth Financial Literacy
*Appropriate for Middle - High School Aged Students.

  • Dec. 18th - "Coyote Christmas: A Lakota Story" Reading & Holiday Craft Project
*If you would like to sign up to receive a Holiday Craft kit, please message us here or email by Dec. 15th, 2020 at Noon. Supplies are limited, so sign up today!

If you don't have Facebook, don't worry! Check out these videos and past videos on our Youtube Channel.
School & Student Shout Outs!
South Middle School - Our Title VI Indian Education Social Worker, Heather Wood, has made her space welcoming to students and we love seeing the flags from the Center for American Indian Research and Native Studies (CAIRNS) with Dr. Craig Howe.
South Park Elementary -
Barb Sachs, 3rd grade teacher at South Park has been sharing the OSEUs with not only her students this year, but also with her co-teacher, Shelby Sieveke's students. Mrs. Sach's records lessons each week to be sent home on Fridays for both classes. She makes sure they have all the materials to find success with the lessons. Students recently learned about Dreamcatchers using the material from their Wonders Reading Curriculum and historical complexities of the Dreamcatcher from the OSEU educators lesson data base. Students at South Park have also learned about star quilts and honor cards, beadwork and designs, and understanding the medicine wheel.

Stevens High School & Central High School -
Poet, performer, and musician, Tanaya Winder from the Southern Ute, Duckwater Shoshone, and Pyramid Lake Paiute Nations, Zoomed into classrooms and recorded poetry readings and workshops for these two high schools. Students learned about writing and were able to focus on using their own personal experiences to shape their voice and writing skills.
Our friends at Robbinsdale Elementary make understanding emotions for all students and staff a priority. They also provide some great tips for success when things may feel challenging or overwhelming. This is just one snapshot of the many trauma-informed practices that can be found in the school to help students and staff succeed every day. Great work with our district’s Whole CHILD initiative!
Students at South Canyon Elementary, in ALL grade levels participated in a variety of Oceti Sakowin Essential Understandings lessons recently. From learning about the buffalo and all that the buffalo provides for the Oceti Sakowin people, to doing creative writing and reading about the Kimímila (butterfly) from Cheryl Whirlwind Soldier's writing, to making Yucca soap, and designing beadwork - students and staff were busy in engaging learning rooted in cultural proficiency.
At Rapid Valley Elementary, 4th graders in Heather Rederth's class have been using the Buffalo Box to enhance classroom learning. Students used the Wonders Curriculum and resources from the Oceti Sakowin Essential Understandings Database. Students are able to interact with parts of a buffalo and learn about ways the Oceti Sakowin used and continually use the buffalo.
GED Prep Program Updates
Our Program
The GED prep program is for 17-year old Rapid City Area Schools students who will not graduate with their cohort class because of credit deficiency. It is the only nationally recognized high school equivalency test that is aligned with current high school standards and college/career readiness. 

The GED covers four main content areas— language arts, mathematics, science, and social studies — that “measure a foundational core of knowledge and skills that are essential for career and college readiness." Students must apply and be accepted into the program, as skill level is a consideration.

Upon passing all 4 tests a GED is earned and accepted by all secondary state schools in South Dakota. The GED Testing Service claims that over 60% of recent GED recipients are currently enrolled in college, and over 97% of all colleges and employers accept a GED. 
Staff Spotlights
"I love what I do for RCAS because every day I get the opportunity to meet and help people from all walks of life. I get to learn and grow from my interactions with the people that come into my life."

Simone Dausch is a McKinney Vento Homeless/Migrant Advocate at Horace Mann Elementary, Knollwood Elementary, and North Middle School. She works with families and students to overcome barriers for students to succeed in school.
"I LOVE getting to offer our students and families another avenue down the path to success. By earning their GED, students can: attend post-secondary education, join the armed forces, or enter the workforce. The GED program helps our students become the best version of themselves to create a better future for their families and future generations in our community. "

Halli Kavanaugh is the GED instructor at Rapid City High School. Halli works with students in alternative settings to help students earn their GED and can move forward with their dreams of further education, entering the job force, or joining the armed forces.
Department Highlights
Shoes, Mittens, Scarves, Hats, and Gloves Donation - Our department partnered with Goodwill to provide over 350 new pairs of shoes, mittens, scarves, hats, and gloves to elementary schools throughout our district. Horace Mann, General Beadle, Rapid Valley, Wilson, Knollwood, Canyon Lake, South Park, and Robbinsdale were able to take the donations to be able to distribute to families in need.
Regifting Store Reopened- Just in time for Christmas, Rapid City Area Schools Regifting Store has reopened. The store is a community outreach that provides gently used clothing, housewares and more, all free of charge.

The Regifting Store is a resource for anyone in Rapid City and the surrounding area who needs assistance, including senior citizens, college students with limited finances, and families with children. There are no income requirements. The store, located in Rapid City High School, is a joint effort between Rapid City Area Schools and Black Hills Special Services.

The store’s coordinator and district Whole CHILD coordinator, Jeanne Burckhard-McKenna, said the store had been closed because of COVID-19. The store reopened Dec. 4 and will be open through Dec. 18 by appointment only. Appointments can be scheduled Monday through Friday between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. Burckhard-McKenna schedules half-hour appointments for one family or individual at a time. To make an appointment, call or text Burckhard-McKenna at 801-231-3998.”

McKinney Vento - Homeless/Migrant Holiday Gift Drive
Santa’s elves have been busy preparing the donation of toys for our McKinney Vento - Homeless/ Migrant students. Staff from Rapid City Area Schools District and Floyd's Truck Center Inc. generously donated gifts and gift wrapping supplies for students to be able to get a gift this holiday season. The Breeze 97.9 donated over $10,000 for holiday gift cards for our students to be able to enjoy!

Thank you to all those who have helped make this possible!
Suicide Prevention Workshop -
In Case You Missed It

On November 19th RCAS offered a virtual suicide prevention parent education event.  During this presentation RCAS Social Emotional Education Coordinator Sarah Zimmerman and Central High School Social Worker Ashley Evans presented information for parents to learn more about:

Suicide prevention in RCAS
Warning signs for depression and suicide
Tips for families about what they can do at home to promote communication and safety
How to access services through our community partners- Behavior Management Systems and Connecting With Our Youth.

If you missed the presentation and would like to view the video please reach out to Sarah Zimmerman
at 605-593-2556 or
Title VI Indian Education Coat Donation- Just in time for colder temps, former RCAS teacher, Robert Cook, received a large donation of new winter coats to be provided to elementary students in our Title VI Program. Wopila, Mr. Cook for your generousity!
Parent Resources
COVID-19 Community Resources- Here's a list of COVID-19 Resources in Rapid City and Black Hills area. These resources were created by the RCAS Social Work Team, is continually updated, and is a living document. It holds information for utilities, food, COVID-19 relief, mental health resources, online school tutorials, and more. Please check it out and share!
Free Developmental Screenings -
The Rapid City Area School District will offer free developmental screenings at Jefferson School for children ages three through five. These developmental screenings check a child’s development in the areas of language and articulation, concept development, hearing, vision, and motor skills. Information about their child’s development is shared with parents, and parents will be provided with ideas to help enhance their children’s development. Preschool children ages three through five will be screened on January 11, 2021. Parents who live in the Rapid City Area School District can make an appointment to have their children screened by calling 394-1813.
Important Information from our RCAS Nurses!
Please notify our nurses at 605.877.4021 or at if your student has tested positive for Covid-19 or your family/student has been in close contact with a positive person!
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