Welcome to Washington

Circle of Courage

The Circle of Courage represents Washington’s educational philosophy and mission statement. The Circle is based upon the Native American concept of holism and the belief of equality and the necessary parts of the greater whole. In education, the concept relates holistically to the total needs of the student (academic, vocational, personal, and social) and encourages maximum growth and development in each student. To achieve this, one must address the four quadrants of the Circle of Courage through academic and co-curricular programs.

is found in a safe, friendly, and nurturing environment where each individual is recognized as a unique human being to be treated with dignity and respect. All people are accepted, valued, and treated equally. It is the belief that in diversity there is strength, and by working together we create a positive learning environment for all students.
recognizes the identification and building of one’s strengths, attainment of personal goals, and learning to share in the achievements of others. WHS believes all students have strengths and can learn and grow.
creates opportunities of caring for others and finding a purpose beyond oneself. It is the belief that acceptance and collaboration are essential in a positive learning environment and that involving students in service to others provides a valuable learning experience.
provides opportunities to develop the skills and confidence to assert positive leadership and achieve self-discipline. WHS believes each individual has the right of choice within reasonable restraints, and accepts responsibility for choices made. The cooperative relationship of the student, parents, school, and community promote autonomy, development and growth.
Academic and co-curricular programs at Washington High School are designed to promote these concepts. We believe it is important for students to grow not only as individuals, but also as part of the larger community. In so doing, students learn the importance of accepting and learning from one another.

Data Information

Achieving our mission, to educate and prepare each student to succeed in a changing world, hinges on our ability to continually improve the effectiveness of our schools. Multiple factors impact student achievement and serve as indicators of effective schools. This Data Profile Directory is prepared to provide parents, educators, and the community with a data profile of various school effectiveness indicators. The directory should be used as one source of data for identifying a school's present status, assessing overall student progress, and planning for continual school improvement.


Each year the South Dakota Department of Education (SD DOE) releases a report card showing the performance of schools across the state. The report card includes information about academic achievement, student attendance for grades K-8, graduation rate for high schools, and professional staff qualifications. These criteria are used to determine the school’s performance index, or SPI.

Although the federal and state governments require building and district-level accountability measures, the District closely monitors the individual progress of each student to ensure that each student is being prepared to succeed in a changing world. By reviewing their student’s quarterly report card, attending Parent Teacher Conferences in the fall and spring, and contacting teachers with questions or concerns parents will have the best picture of how their children are progressing.


All schools in the District are submitting their School Improvement Plan to the Board for approval prior to submitting them to the State. The Plans, developed by a team of parents, community members and staff, serve as a roadmap for future planning and professional development and measure student achievement.

Each school has a building leadership team that meets regularly throughout the year to guide the development, implementation, and evaluation of the School Improvement Plan. Building leadership teams divide the larger plan into smaller segments with the following focuses: staff roles, goals, meetings summary, data processes, priorities and strategies, and the professional development plan.

This document guides the work in order to meet the District’s mission, priority statements from the Strategic Plan, and the achievement goals set by the South Dakota Department of Education.


Fall Enrollment



Office Hours 8:10 am to 3:05 pm Monday through Friday
Start Time Dismissal Time  
All Grades 8:10 am 3:05 pm Monday through Friday

Contact Information

Daniel Conrad, Principal
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Address Phone Number Fax Number
501 N. Sycamore
Sioux Falls SD, 57110
(605) 367-7970 (605) 367-8494

Registrar Fax
(605) 367-7982

Nate Malchow
Assistant Principal

Preston Kooima
Assistant Principal

Rachael Eggers
Assistant Principal


Construction of Washington High School began in 1904, after Central School in Sioux Falls was outgrown. Upon completion in 1908, it was renamed from Sioux Falls High School to Washington High School. Three hundred twenty-eight high school students marched into the new building on February 14, 1908.

The students soon outgrew the building. With a high school population of 536 in 1911, the enrollment exceeded the maximum capacity of 500. With the addition of a new South Wing to Washington High in 1922, the enrollment grew from 959 in 1921 to 1,660 in 1930.

The district approved the remodeling of the North Wing in 1932, and in 1935, the center unit of Washington High School was completed. Following this remodeling, the exterior of Washington High School stood from 1935 until the current Washington High School was completed in 1992.

All Sioux Falls high school students attended Washington from 1908 through the 1963-1964 school year. Washington's enrollment grew to 2,925 during the 1963-1964 year. The building's recommended capacity was 2,100. To solve overcrowding; the district began construction on Lincoln High School, a second high school located on Cliff Avenue next to Interstate 229. For about six weeks, in the fall of 1965, 3,300 students attended classes in a split schedule. Following some delays, Lincoln High School opened on October 19,1965 with 1,300 students.

In the fall of 1992, 1,439 Washington High School students attended classes in the current Washington High School. Since then, WHS has continued its legacy of excellence that dates back to the turn of the century. Washington High School currently serves 2,060 students with 120 teachers, 5 counselors, 18 education assistants, 44 support staff and 4 administrators.

The Sioux Falls School District continues to grow and is currently serving 20,750 students in preschool through twelfth grade. Washington High School is located in the northeast quadrant of Sioux Falls. Washington High School has the highest population of free and reduced lunch students, special education, and English Language Learners of the three public high schools.

Thanks to WHS teacher Deb Merxbauer for providing this history.