SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — The South Dakota Board of Education Standards will be getting its fourth new president in less than three years.
In a secret ballot Monday, board members voted 4-2 to elect Steve Perkins of Sioux Falls over the incumbent, Terry Nebelsick of Huron.
Nebelsick wanted the vote held publicly by roll call. But a majority of the board turned him down.
Perkins takes over the president’s role in January.
Earlier this year, Perkins was part of the majority that voted 5-2 for new social-studies standards. Nebelsick voted against them.
The new standards were opposed by the Associated School Boards of South Dakota, the School Administrators of South Dakota and the South Dakota Education Association, a bargaining group that represents teachers and other educators.
Governor Kristi Noem supported the new standards, which were written by a former Hillsdale College faculty member who had a contract with the state Department of Education.
In May 2022, the governor declined to reappoint the board’s then-president, Jacqueline Sly of Rapid City. She instead appointed Rich Meyer of Rapid City.
Sly’s departure led to the board’s then-vice president, Becky Guffin of Aberdeen, taking over as president.
The board eventually chose Nebelsick, a former Huron superintendent, as president for 2023.
The governor declined to reappoint Guffin, the Aberdeen superintendent. In February, she chose Perkins instead.
Board member Julie Westra of Sioux Falls abstained from the vote for the new president Monday.
Meyer was unanimously chosen as the new vice president. He succeeds Westra.
Board member Linda Olsen of Dupree nominated Nebelsick. Meyer then nominated Perkins.
Steve Willard, the Belle Fourche superintendent, joined Nebelsick in voting against the social studies standards in April. Willard resigned from the board in May.