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February 16, 2018 05:10 PM

Jeff Little Retiring After Four Decades With SF District

A long time media instructor in the Sioux Falls School District will soon hang up his headset. Jeff Little helped train and inspire many students interested in videography and television equipment over a four-decade career.

Little helps his classes put together segments for KLRN, a local TV station dedicated to connecting community members to what's going on in the school district.

Friday at the CTE Academy, Little is carefully directing a team of students inside the KLRN studio. 

From fancy, new cameras to video editing equipment, Little says things have come a long way since he first started his full-time position with the district 44 years ago. 

"My first job was installing cable in all the old school buildings," Little said. 

The Media Equipment Specialist was there when OWL-TV first came online in Sioux Falls at Lincoln High School in 1974. The station's first programs were on film. Over the years that switched to tape. Now everything is on computers. 

"They gave me some training tapes and I started watching and I thought, this is going to take forever. I thought, let's just try it and do it and see how it goes," Little said. 

He's done just fine adapting to the latest technology and marvels at his students' abilities to do the same.  

"But the students come in, they've already had all the computer stuff and so much of media today is computer driven that they just take right off with it. They do a great job," Little said. 

With "Broadcast Production" classes taking place each semester, he's training even more apprentices today than ever before. Roosevelt Sophomore Max Larson shares Little's passion for the craft.

"This is probably the most fun class out of all them because you get to be creative and make a product and be happy about the product you make," Larson said. 

Larson likes shooting basketball games for KLRN and wants a career in sports production. 

"We get a lot more students coming through and there's a lot that have gone on to college to study media," Little said. 

Over four decades, several of Little's students have ended up working at local TV stations including KELOLAND TV. While his studio looks a lot different today...

"It has changed quite a bit," Little said. 

He's glad to have stuck with the job and will cherish his relationships with current and former students. 

This year alone, Little and his team will record and produce more than 70 on-site television productions in school buildings, the Washington Pavilion and other venues. The productions include concerts, sporting events and graduation ceremonies. 

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