A half-cent increase in the state sales tax has helped raise teachers’ salaries in South Dakota.
But many school districts across the state still struggle with revenue. Forty-four percent of the state’s school districts have enacted opt-outs, allowing them to raise property taxes in their districts.
School funding is a topic of discussion in the gubernatorial campaign and is likely to be on the agenda for lawmakers as well as the funding formula comes up for review.
In this story, South Dakota News Watch contributor Tom Griffith looks into the challenges facing local school districts and outlines two recent attempts by West Central and Brookings school districts to get opt-outs approved by patrons.