November 30th, 2017 Declared “LuAnn Heidebrink Day” in Dell Rapids

After 38 years in education at Dell Rapids, LuAnn Heidebrink retired on Thursday, November 30th, 2017.  Because of her dedication to Dell Rapids and education, Dell Rapids Mayor Tom Earley declared it “LuAnne Heidebrink Day” in Dell Rapids Thursday in honor of her.  The declaration came during a ceremony held in the commons area at Dell Rapids Middle School.  Heidebrink has been serving as the Dell Rapids District Office Secretary.

“LuAnn has been the rock for our district.  I truly believe her unwavering care and compassion for staff and students has shaped a culture of kindness throughout Dell Rapids. There isn’t a person who has worked or attended Dell Rapids Public Schools that hasn’t been positively impacted by something LuAnn did.  She will be missed in so many ways, although someone so special will stay in our hearts forever,” said Dell Rapids Superintendent Dr. Summer Schultz.

Heidebrink will continue to work as a substitute secretary and provide office help to the district office on a part-time basis.


Photo courtesy of Stacey Gleason




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Dell Rapids School Vandalized

DellRapidsHighSchoolDuring the Dell Rapids City Council regular meeting on Monday, November 20th, Minnehaha County Sheriff’s Deputy Kellen Weidner gave a report of vandalism of the Dell Rapids High School.  Officer Weidner reported the vandalism took place during the night of Sunday, November 19th. Nazi graffiti was spray-painted on the side of the building.

“We are aware of it.  It’s something that is happening throughout the county, mostly in Sioux Falls,” Weidner said.  “If there’s any businesses or anything that happen to get any of that graffiti, make sure to contact us immediately.  That way we can keep going on that case.  All of the deputies are aware of it.”

Weidner also reported that the Minnehaha County Sheriff’s Office deputies are doing their best to be out trying to see people who might be out after hours.

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7th/8th Grade Soccer Season a Success

By:  Coach Mike Ebbing

Last month we concluded our strongest soccer season yet for the 7th & 8th grade girls. This team is made up of girls from Garretson and Dell Rapids. It was great to see the girls gel and become one team. During the season many of the players were able to attend a Minnesota United (pro soccer) game in the Twin Cities, which was a lot of fun as well.

In speaking with our high school coach before the season began we changed our formation and adopted the same type of formation for this group. This gave the girls the chance to learn and develop this new system. It proved to be a very strong approach as the team went 8 – 0 on the season and captured first place in the Sioux Falls league!!! We had two close games beating the Brandon team 2 – 1 in a thriller and a 3 -1 win over West Central. It all starts with good goal keepers and we have two that were stout. We also had a very good back line of defense that would start the attack for us as we moved the ball up to our midfielders and strikers. Great job ladies!

With the sanction between Garretson and Dell Rapids for soccer, this is showing GREAT things to come this fall! If you have or know of a girls between the grades of 7th grade and Senior in high school that would like to play soccer, please call Steph Bittner (605) 212-5946.

Front row left to right:   Leigha Lacey, Tori Lodmell, Madison Ljunggren, Miriam Pickard, Olivia Mullin, Madison Decker, Jenna VanHolland, Morgan Damman, Payton Campbell

Back row left to right:  Kayla Genzlinger, Allison Ebbing, Madeline Reisch, Kylie Bittner, Logan Bly, Raegan Altman, Makayla Duinkerken, Mackenzie Garry, Coach Mike Ebbing

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Dell Rapids Connections Sponsors Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Presentation

ConnectionsSuicidePreventionThe Dell Rapids Connections group continued work started by a Dell Rapids student early this year.  The group sponsored a mental health and suicide prevention presentation on Monday, November 20th.  The presentation included two speakers.  Angela Drake from Tea and Tod Lacey from Dell Rapids both spoke during the “Talk Saves Lives” presentation.  Both speakers are parents who have lost a child to suicide.

The presentation was held for students and parents throughout the day.  Students saw the presentation in the afternoon during their school day.  Parents were invited to a supper meal provided by the Dell Rapids Connections group and heard the presentation Monday evening at the Dell Rapids Middle School commons area.

The Dell Rapids Connections group sponsored the event in an effort to continue the work started by Sydney LaCoursiere.  LaCoursiere put together an event in October during the Dell Rapids vs Flandreau football game.  A total of 112 luminary bags were placed around the football field and fans attending the game were given a flier that talked about mental heath issues.  Her desire to get awareness out to the public is due the number of suicides the Dell Rapids community has faced over the last 10 years.

Parents can find more information and resources at the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention website.

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Seven Dell Rapids Students Qualify for State Oral Interp

OralInterpFour Dell Rapids St Mary students and three Dell Rapids students have qualified for the 2017 South Dakota High School State Oral Interp Festival on Friday, December 1st and Saturday, December 2nd at Aberdeen Central High School.

Thomas Eining, Emma Nelson, Maggie Klein, and Jordan Eining from Dell Rapids St Mary earned a trip to the state festival after their regional performances in Sioux Falls on Tuesday, November 14th.  T. Eining will be performing in the Humor category.  Nelson will be in the Serious category.  Klein and J. Eining will be performing a Duet.

Olvia Clark, Jay Holm, and Ella Lueders from Dell Rapids also earned a trip to the state festival for their regional performances in Brookings on Tuesday, November 14th.  Clark will be performing in the Non-Original Oratory category.  Holm will be in Story Telling, and Lueders will perform a piece in Serious.  Holm and Lueders will also perform a Duet.  Tim Jaycox is an alternate for the Humor category.  Also earning an alternate position was the Readers Theater team of Morgan Nemmers, Lueders, Holm, Abby Stauffenecker, Jaycox, and Clark.

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Dell Rapids Middle and High Schools Raise Money for Hurricane Relief

Students at both the Dell Rapids Middle School and Dell Rapids High School held fundraisers recently to raise money for hurricane relief.

The middle school held a week-long “Penny War” the week of October 16th – 20th.  Students could bring in spare change throughout the week with the winning class receiving a movie and popcorn party for the whole grade.  Points were accumulated throughout the week for each grade level.  Points were gained by adding pennies to grade’s jug.  Points were subtracted by adding silver coins and bills to the other grade’s jugs.  The 6th grade finished with -19,001 points.  The 7th grade had -13,763 points.  5th grade finished with -13,762 points.  The winning class of the movie and popcorn party was the 8th grade class with a total of +1,922 points.

Throughout the “Penny War” week, the students and staff of the middle school raised $1,186.24!  All the money will be donated to the American Red Cross for relief efforts following hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria.

The Dell Rapids High School also held their own fundraiser that also raised funds for hurricane relief.  Raffle tickets were sold to the high school students for $2.00 each.  The raffle earned the students a chance to throw a whipped-cream pie at Mr. Bunkers during the pep rally on Friday, October 20th.  A few lucky students were drawn out and able to throw their pies in front of the entire middle and high school during the pep rally.  The high school students were able to raise $200 to be added to the hurricane relief.



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Singers Selected for 2017 All-State Choir

music-2618342_1280Eight singers from Dell Rapids and four singers from Dell Rapids St Mary have been selected for the 2017 All-State Chorus and Orchestra performance.  This year’s concert will be held on Saturday, October 28th at 7:00 p.m. at the Denny Sanford Premier Center in Sioux Falls.

Kathryn Fletcher, Amy Meyer, Sydney Stofferahn, Mercedes Lodmell, Alec Saxon, Andrew Weiland, Thomas Petrik, and Peyton Gleason have been selected to participate from Dell Rapids.  Morgan Brech, Abby Stauffenecker, and Riley Nyman were selected as alternates.  Participates from Dell Rapids St Mary are Courtney Geraets, Paige Bunkers, Noah Dennis, and Jon Bares.

This year’s guest conductor is Dr. Tim Seelig from San Francisco, CA.  Seelig is a conductor, singer, teacher, and motivational speaker.

Tickets for the concert are $19.00 for adult and student reserved section, $14.00 for adult general admission, or $8.00 for student general admission.

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Free Meals at Dell Rapids Approved for End of the Year

PizzaLunchStudents at Dell Rapids will be receiving free breakfast and lunch during the last four days of school thanks to the Dell Rapids School Board.  The school board approved the free meals for the final days of school on May 18th, 19th, 22nd, and 23rd.

“I think it’s a great way to give back.  Obviously the food must be better,” said board member Steve Stofferahn.

“We are happy we still have the ability to do it with the big changes that do cost more, and we hope it produces some interest in that breakfast program,” superintendent Dr. Schultz mentioned.

A la carte items and seconds will still be charged at the usual price.  Students must have money in their accounts or pay cash for those items.


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Dell Rapids Students Honored at DSU Ceremony

NCWIT local winner Janae Hahn is congratulated by Dakota State University President José-Marie Griffiths (left) and South Dakota Governor Dennis Daugaard at a ceremony at DSU on April 12.

NCWIT local winner Janae Hahn is congratulated by Dakota State University President José-Marie Griffiths (left) and South Dakota Governor Dennis Daugaard at a ceremony at DSU on April 12.

MADISON, S.D., April 20, 2017 – “Believe in yourself,” is simple advice, yet it is sometimes hard to do, said South Dakota’s governor Dennis Daugaard.

“The biggest challenge we all have is believing that we can accomplish something when others doubt us and when we may doubt ourselves,” he stated.

Daugaard’s remarks were made at Dakota State University during the 2017 NCWIT (National Center for Women in IT) Award Ceremony held on campus April 12, where 17 high school women from North and South Dakota and two South Dakota technology teachers were honored with the NCWIT Aspirations in Computing (AiC) award.

Among the honorees was Janae Hahn of Dell Rapids High School, who was a Local Winner. She is planning a career in electrical engineering, math and statistics. Bergen Weiland of Dell Rapids High School was a Local Honorable Mention awardee. She is planning a career in artificial intelligence and robotics. Students were selected on the basis of their aptitude and aspirations in technology and computing, leadership ability, academic history, and plans for post-secondary education.

NCWIT local honorable mention winner Bergen Weiland is congratulated by Dakota State University President José-Marie Griffiths (left) and South Dakota Governor Dennis Daugaard at a ceremony at DSU on April 12.

NCWIT local honorable mention winner Bergen Weiland is congratulated by Dakota State University President José-Marie Griffiths (left) and South Dakota Governor Dennis Daugaard at a ceremony at DSU on April 12.

“We know that a sense of belonging is a key persistence factor for young women who chose computing degrees and careers,” said NCWIT CEO and Co-founder Lucy Sanders. “Not only do these awards increase the visibility of young technical women and their educators, they also grant entry into an inclusive community of peers that support each other in advancing their innovative dreams.”

AiC provides a long-term community for female technologists by encouraging persistence in computing through continuous engagement and ongoing encouragement at each pivotal stage of their educational and professional development. This is the 11th season of the Award for Aspirations in Computing (AiC), and the 6th year with regional affiliates. The South and North Dakota region honored eight winners at their first event in 2013.

To date, AiC has publicly recognized nearly 4,700 young women for their interests and achievements in technology. Seventy-one percent of those are now in college, pursuing a computer science or engineering degree. More than 150 educators have been recognized through AiC as well. Lori Goldade, district technology coordinator at Warner School District, was this year’s teacher award winner; Amber Fluth, business computer teacher at Tri-Valley, was the runner-up.

Daugaard encouraged the high school women to consider careers in computing, because the work they could do is important. In 2016, there were 1.6 million attacks on the South Dakota state government, he stated, so “we need people like you to help defend our state, defend our businesses and our nation against attackers like this.”

He also asked the girls to consider Dakota State for their academic degrees, calling the school a cyber leader in America. “It’s an excellent institution of higher learning,” he said.

“We want all of our students to experience the world as it’s going to be through the use and application of emerging and available technologies — a distinguishing feature of this institution,” said DSU President José-Marie Griffiths.

Alexis Perez, an analyst with Facebook, was another special guest at the ceremony, teaching the winners about Python coding with a hands-on project. Presenters included the NCWIT Regional Program Director Ammi Ludwick, and Dakota State University faculty Dr. Ashley Podhradsky, Pam Rowland and Dr. Kyle Cronin.

Sponsoring partners for this event were Dakota State University, AiC, National Center for Women and Information Technology, and DSU’s Center of Excellence in Computer Information Systems. Also assisting was DSU’s new CybHER outreach program, a movement to add more gender diversity to the field of cybersecurity through a variety of events and interactions.


Dakota State University is a public university located in Madison, South Dakota, part of the State of South Dakota Regental system of specialized schools and universities.  Founded in 1881 as a teacher’s college, it maintains that heritage mission, while also carrying out its signature mission of technology-infused and technology-intensive degrees.  The university offers both undergraduate (Associate and Baccalaureate) and graduate degrees (Masters and Doctorate).  It has grown rapidly in national recognition as a technology-forward school, and has significant partnerships with the U.S. National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security, among others, for DSU’s cyber security-related programs.  For more information, please contact Jane Utecht, Strategic Communications Coordinator at, 605-256-5027. The DSU website is

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High School Girls Soccer Request for Dell Rapids HS Takes Step Forward

SoccerA request to make high school soccer a girls sport in Dell Rapids took another step forward during the Dell Rapids School Board meeting on Monday, February 13th.

The board passed a motion to approve the intent to move forward with a cooperative with Garretson for two years for girls high school soccer.  As part of the approved motion, Superintendent Dr. Summer Schultz, Athletic Director Jeff Dvorak, and school board member Jody Schumaker will be looking over the cooperation language to ensure it looks appropriate and protects the district.  They will then meet with representatives from Garretson to finalize the agreement language before everything becomes finalized.

“The district understands that although soccer hasn’t been a school sponsored activity, its popularity has grown in the community.  The cooperative allows us to provide an opportunity for varsity level female athletes to participate while we continue to monitor the level of support and participation that can be expected,” said Dr. Schultz.

Once a finalized agreement has been made between Dell Rapids and Garretson, the final step will be to submit the cooperative agreement to the South Dakota High School Activities Association prior to their April meeting.  The SDHSAA will have to approve the cooperative.

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