Funds from a separate general fund revenue source are available to the Wyoming Department of Education via W.S. 21-22-102 to distribute to school districts annually as innovative program grants. The purpose of the grant is to create innovative educational opportunities for public school students at all levels. W.S. 21-22-106 states that the funding should provide innovation in or improvement of public education through the creation of new, different and improved educational opportunities in elementary and secondary schools inclusive of the following:
- Curriculum development activities such as initiatives in foreign languages, mathematics, social studies, English and the sciences; programs to develop critical or creative thinking; programs involving the private sector and programs providing parental and family training.
- Operational initiatives such as modification to class schedules, school day, week, month or year calendar and scheduling of extracurricular activities.
- Administrator and staff development and improvement programs such as performance incentives, awards for excellence, professional training and development programs, and performance evaluation programs.
- Acquisition of technological equipment for programs expanding curriculum, enriching student education, enhancing staff development and providing community service.
- Applied science and technology programs designed to meet future labor market demands and to integrate public school programs with needs of business and industry.
- Technical preparation programs integrating specific public school programs with community college programs and working with business and industry to prepare students for technical and academic careers.
- Evaluation programs designed to determine the effect and achievement of innovative programs previously funded or currently provided within the district.
- Public early childhood programs including those designed to better prepare children for elementary school, and to improve parents’ skills in developing their children’s learning skills.
Funds through the Wyoming Education Trust Fund are available for one-year grants to any public school district. Districts may apply individually or in conjunction with other districts. A total of $250,000.00 is available for this RFP. An estimated five (5) to seven (7) grants will be awarded. Funds for the 2014-2015 grant will be distributed to the district[s] awarded the grants on or prior to August 15, 2014. W.S. 21-22-107 (c) clearly states that at least one qualifying grant must be awarded if possible in each of the following classifications based on average daily membership (ADM):
- Classification I Less than 500 ADM;
- Classification II 500 but less than 1,000 ADM;
- Classification III 1,000 but less than 2,000 ADM;
- Classification IV 2,000 or greater ADM.
* If districts apply as a consortium, the ADM classification will be adjusted according to the classifications above.