New Sioux Falls School Names Announced


UPDATED 2:25 p.m.

The committee received over 2,200 responses from the community on what to name the new schools.

School officials say that over 2/3 of the responses came with the suggestion of Thomas Jefferson, which is what the high school is going to be called.

Both names, Thomas Jefferson and Ben Reifel, were chosen based on school board policy and followed those processes in naming the facilities. One of those reasons is the impact both people had on education.

Ben Reifel grew up on the Rosebud Indian Reservation and was a member of the Sioux Tribe. He graduated from South Dakota State University, where he earned degrees in both chemistry and dairy science. He was also the first Native American to earn a doctoral degree from Harvard. He went on to serve five terms in Congress.

Thomas Jefferson was the third President of the United States and a founding father of the Declaration of Independence. He also is one of the presidential faces on Mount Rushmore.

11:52 a.m. 

The wait is over. 

We now know what the names will be for the new Sioux Falls middle and high school. The high school that’s going to be in the northern part of the city will be called Thomas Jefferson High School. 

And the middle school, which will be built on the southeast side of Sioux Falls, will be called Ben Reifel Middle School. 

So why did they decide on these names? And what do people think about them? That’s something KELOLAND’s Sarah McDonald is finding out. 

She’ll be updating us on social media all day Thursday and she’ll have more details Thursday night on KELOLAND News.

7:02 a.m. 

We will soon learn what the next high school and middle school in Sioux Falls could be called.

Late Thursday morning, three members of the Sioux Falls School District Facilities Naming Committee will announce the names that have been chosen.  The School Board will then vote on the names next week. You can watch the news conference LIVE in the player below. 

The new high school is being built in northwestern Sioux Falls; the new middle school will be on the east-side of the city. 

KELOLAND’s Sarah McDonald will be there as the names are revealed.  Watch it live at 11:45 a.m. on our KELOLAND News Facebook page and follow Sarah’s coverage throughout the day on her Facebook and Twitter accounts.  

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