It is for the first time since 1996 that the NIEA convention was held in Rapid City. Next year's convention is likely to take place in Anchorage, Alaska.
NIEA officials estimated that one of the association's primary goal is to promote greater freedom and educational standards in Native American classrooms. And with two major Native American reservations and several locals schools in western South Dakota, the ideas and presentations being brought to Rapid City have to include a wide-scope of grade levels.
Suzanne Whitelance, a co-chair of the local planning committee said, "It really encompasses a lot of those current public policy issues, current curriculum, education in our schools. So it's really through post graduate, and we have a number of students that are even hosting conference workshops."
"They have been really gracious with us. They allowed us a discount to have busses available to take participant up to our cultural night ritual, at Crazy Horse Mountain. And they were phenomenal, and they did a laser light show for people," he added.