STARS Connections

The official newsletter for SD-STARS - October 2020

Coming Soon! Updated SD-STARS MOA

Districts will need to sign another Memoranda of Agreement (MOA) in order for data from their Student Information System, such as Infinite Campus, to be loaded into SD-STARS. The department will send this MOA to superintendents via DocuSign. Please keep an eye out for it and sign and return it as soon as possible.

2019-20 Accountability report card wrap-up

The 2019-20 Accountability report card is wrapped up! On Oct. 7, the report card will be released to the public. You will be able to find the public report card at

What is the public report card?

Data loads, data requests, proactive admissions

This article includes some data updates for SD-STARS users. Updates included are

  • Data Load: Dual Credit
  • Data Request: 7th - 12th Grade addresses
  • Data Request: FAFSA
  • Proactive Admissions, College Readiness Coursework


COVID-19 Updates

Below are some highlights from the department and others on efforts to support districts during the pandemic.

  • Starting Well webpage updated regularly
  • Re-imagining Remote Education in South Dakota: The ESF-REM Project
  • Zoom licenses available to educators free of charge
  • FERPA Resources


Changes to dual credit now in effect, SD-STARS report can help

During the 2020 legislative session, SB 142 was passed. This new law went into effect July 1, 2020. It requires that, starting this fall, students in the High School Dual Credit program are no longer eligible to participate if they have received a “W” or “F” grade in a high school dual credit course. Learn more about this change. Read more...

Districts may request new reports or enhancements with simple form

The South Dakota Department of Education encourages districts to send requests for new reports in SD-STARS or submit enhancements of current SD-STARS reports. Read more...

SD-STARS webinars aim to help users: Department provides trainings to analyze SD-STARS reports

The Department of Education is offering online trainings for district- and school-level users of SD-STARS. Any SD-STARS users who wish to be trained by the SD-STARS team may attend these training webinars. Read more...

October 27, 2020, 1:30-2:30 p.m. CT: Exploring attendance data


November 18, 2020, 1:30-2:30 p.m. CT: Analyzing quantitative student data


SAM webinar to introduce Admin menu

Demo and resources will feature changes for district SAMs

Due to changes coming to SD-STARS in mid-December, the SD-STARS team is providing a new training opportunity for STARS Account Managers (SAMs) in each district. Read more...

January 14, 2021, 10:30 a.m. CT: Live demo and Q&A for SAMs


Ask the Experts

The SD-STARS teams answers the following questions:

  • How often must my district synchronize data for attendance data to appear in SD-STARS?
  • My password from last year won’t work anymore in SD-STARS. What should I do?


STARS Certified Trainers

These trainers are located throughout the state and are ready and willing to answer your questions. They are available to conduct SD-STARS trainings for your school or district to help educators make the most out of SD-STARS. STARS Certified Trainers (SCTs) have been trained by department staff on the SD-STARS system and are kept up-to-date on system developments and new reports. Districts can contact SCTs directly to request training at a cost to the district.

About Us

South Dakota STARS Connections is a bi-monthly publication for South Dakota administrators and teachers, produced by the South Dakota Department of Education. This publication is intended to communicate news and events regarding the South Dakota Student Teacher Accountability and Reporting System (SD-STARS), our Statewide Longitudinal Data System. To view an online edition of this newsletter, go to
Contact us with story ideas or questions.


General Mailbox, for the quickest response to any question

Sara Kock, Team Lead

(605) 220-6548

Kim Carlson, Project Manager

(605) 773-8062

Brad Steckelberg, Support Lead

(605) 295-7260