South Dakota Teaching Salaries and Benefits


Staying healthy can be more expensive than you would imagine. As the costs of medicine and basic care rise, more people rely on health insurance coverage to ensure they don’t encounter financial difficulties down the road.

Financial stresses caused by health care not only negatively affect your classroom performance, but your future as well. Fortunately, teachers in South Dakota are covered for a variety of scenarios with a benefits package that includes both health insurance and retirement planning services.

Learn more about becoming a teacher. Contact schools offering teacher education/certification programs in South Dakota.

Teacher Salaries in South Dakota by Education

As teachers further their educations and gain experience in the field, they receive pay increases that reflect their dedication and hard work. Salaries vary between school districts, but the following are some examples of the salaries you can expect in South Dakota:

At 3 years$31,510 $33,395
At 6 years$32,315$34,280
At 9 years$33,925$36,050
At 12 years$34,730$36,935

Source: Brookings School District

Retiring in South Dakota

The South Dakota Retirement System (SDRS) is dedicated to providing teachers with a lifetime income replacement after retirement. Their goal is to allow every retiree to live out the remainder of their lives in relative financial comfort.

In order to meet this goal, SDRS automatically enrolls members into a defined benefit program. Once you reach normal retirement age, you may begin collecting pension benefits. In South Dakota, teachers reach normal retirement at age 65.

Providing retired teachers with monthly pensions requires a strong funding source. To keep funds flowing, teachers make annual contributions to the plan. Each year, 12% of your total salary is contributed to the retirement fund – you contribute 6%, while your employer contributes an additional 6%.

You can calculate the monthly pension you will receive with the following formula:

Final Average Compensation
multiplied by
Service Credit Years
multiplied by

To get a more detailed description of the retirement benefits offered to teachers in South Dakota, visit the South Dakota Retirement System.

Access to Affordable Health Insurance

Because health coverage is necessary to improve and maintain the wellness of you and your family, South Dakota offers health insurance for all public employees, including teachers. This health insurance plan includes medical, dental, and vision insurance.

Medical Insurance
Teachers are offered several different medical insurance plans that vary based on the amount of deductible and out-of-pocket expenses. However, all the plans will cover the majority of medical costs including:

  • Wellness and Prevention
  • Prescription Drugs
  • Well Child Care
  • Laboratory Tests
  • Physical Therapy

Dental Insurance
Dental insurance plans are available to all teachers and their dependents, and enrollment is voluntary. These plans cover basic procedures, major services, preventative care, and orthodontic services.

Vision Plan
The vision plan offers teachers many vision related services for free or at a discount through Ameritas Company. Services include eye exams, contact lens fittings, and eyeglass frames.

Beyond these basic health benefits, South Dakota public teachers are also eligible for additional benefits such as flexible spending accounts, life insurance, and short-term disability. To learn more about the variety of benefits offered, contact the Benefits Office.