Not only does Sioux Falls offer an exceptional business climate, gorgeous park systems and endless entertainment, it also offers one of the most competitive educational environments in the country. Sioux Falls' educational offerings are near the top in several national rankings.

From public and private preschools to post-secondary opportunities in technical education and four-year degrees and beyond, Sioux Falls has it all.

The K-12 public schools, with an enrollment nearing 25,000, boast a wide array of opportunities, including four specialized elementary schools, an honors program at middle school and strong AP (Advanced Placement) programs at the high schools, not to mention top performing extracurricular groups and teams in the state. The School Board's commitment to providing multiple pathways for students to achieve success is a journey of ongoing discovery. In addition to three traditional high schools, the District also opened a Career and Technical Education Academy, as well as a project-based learning high school — New Tech — in 2010. These schools are built on community partnerships to give students authentic learning experiences in real-world environments.

Faith-based private schools also have a firm foothold in the community, offering high-quality programs and high-performing activities for students and families who wish to have religion incorporated into their child's academic experience.

Southeast Technical Institute walks instep with local business leaders to develop programs that produce highly-skilled, ready-to-work graduates in critical need areas. From manufacturing to health care, the educational community changes along with the business community.

The University Center brings together advanced degrees from the state's four-year institutions to make them more accessible to the 250,000+ residents of the four-county Metropolitan Statistical Area. Flexible delivery including face-to-face classes and online learning create a menu of options to suit the needs of the young professional, mid-life career person or advanced and aspiring corporate execs.

The entrepreneurial spirit is also alive and thriving in Sioux Falls! Residents of all ages enjoy expanding their knowledge by taking classes from the Sioux Falls Parks and Recreation Department, Sioux Falls School District Community Education, Osher Life-Long Learning Institute (OLLIE) and a host of other businesses that offer "how-to" classes and deeper dives into your areas of interest.

Your need for knowledge, collaboration and fun awaits in the educational opportunities offered in Sioux Falls! Join us!

What it means to me

Opportunities to Meet All Your Educational Needs

by DeeAnn Konrad

When I think of Sioux Falls, the phrase "THE Place to Be!" comes to mind. I grew up in a small community in South Dakota and loved it there, but after college, my first job brought me to Sioux Falls. Now I can't imagine being anywhere else! It's like a little piece of heaven on earth!

I love what Sioux Falls offers in terms of educational opportunities for every age of learner. Through my work at the Sioux Falls School District, I am privileged to supervise Community Education classes. Twice each year, our small staff puts out a catalog packed full of fun and rewarding classes.

We keep our eyes and ears open for new trends in the areas of the arts, culinary, wellness and travel and develop our community educational opportunities to match those interests. Last year we took over 8,000 registrations for classes on everything from beginner Crochet to Michael Jackson's Thriller dance to Retirement Planning and Belly Dance for Health.

Our instructors are people like you and me. Most have full-time jobs in an area other than what they are teaching, but the instructors are passionate about their skill and want to share it with others. We set up the classes, assign locations for them to be held, take registrations and the instructor just shows up to share his or her craft with others. A few years ago, two attendees taking the same class fell in love and were eventually married! Talk about finding your passion in Community Education!

Our classes are just a small sliver of what's offered in Sioux Falls to help residents improve themselves or find a new hobby. There is nothing that fuels our staff more than having a class be so popular that we have to add sessions so everyone who is interested can participate!