New Sioux Falls School District Superintendent takes office

Published: Jul. 1, 2020 at 5:41 PM CDT
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The new Sioux Falls School District Superintendent took office Wednesday.

Dr. Jane Stavem replaces Dr. Brian Maher as Superintendent of Sioux Falls Schools and is being met with some challenges on day one amid the Coronavirus pandemic.

For many, the first day of a new job is focused on learning the basics, but the new Superintendent of Sioux Falls Schools is hitting the ground running Wednesday as she discovers the best way to balance school during a pandemic.

Jane Stavem takes over the reins as Sioux Falls School District Superintendent with a large task at hand; how to handle the Coronavirus?

Stavem said, “All of those unknowns are not typical, but people here have done a really good job of planning up to this point and today we are spending more time doing that. I’m confident that we will be able to start school safely and do our very best work to get kids back in the learning mode.”

Between now and the start of the school year, many hours of planning will be put into how to best serve Sioux Falls students, and right now there are many options on the table.

The Superintendent added, “It’s having that plan of what does it look like if all kids come back to school? What does it look like if we have to go to some limited numbers, a percentage of students coming on a particular day? What does it look like if we have to return to that full remote picture of learning?”

Prior to her arrival in South Dakota, Stavem was the Superintendent at Lake Washington School District in Washington state, and the two places do have some similarities.

"There are great people wherever you go, and I had a very strong team there that was working on all of these complex issues and I see the very same thing here.” Stavem said, “There are people who care very deeply about our students and they’re doing their very best work to make sure that we are planning for everything that we need to plan for.”

During her short time in Sioux Falls, Stavem says she sees a lot of promise in the school system.

Stavem said, “As I’ve driven by schools and see how well they’ve been maintained and some of them that are getting some new additions and then brand new schools; all of that paints the picture of a very healthy place to come and be a part of education and to be part of the community.”

Stavem mentioned that she’s excited about the future and wants to be a part of Sioux Falls both professionally and personally for a long time.

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