As we are now past the August 16 election, we want to congratulate Megan Degenfelder on her primary victory for Wyoming Superintendent of Public Instruction. We also will assure the winner of the November general elections that we will do everything we can to achieve a smooth and successful transition, for the good of the WDE, Wyoming, and most importantly, our schools and our students.
In the meantime, I look forward to the remainder of my term here (four months) and the work that still needs to be done. Besides the Teacher Apprenticeship Initiative that is now off the ground, we have in our sights the Wyoming Literacy Campaign (to be officially launched in November), a School Leadership Training Regimen (in the works), and the Tourism & Hospitality Project (in concert with our CTE programs). We are excited about how each of these programs will further position Wyoming to lead the nation in education, reinforcing our vision and focus.
Vision & Focus
The great historic education tradition was about teaching young minds how to learn from others so they could think for themselves. The thrust of Aristotelian logic and the Socratic teaching method was always on developing thinkers. Socrates himself said, “I can’t teach anyone anything, I can only make them think.”
The Primary Priority
Here are the Wyoming Teacher Apprenticeship questions for this week.
Can districts limit the number of candidates based on available funding? Is there a screening beyond meeting the requirements or qualifications?
Yes, districts can have additional considerations for who they select as apprentices beyond the minimum qualifications identified by WDE and PTSB. Apprentice applicants will need a letter of recommendation from a building administrator, and participate in an interview about the apprenticeship. Some of the additional considerations may include: content area staffing needs and apprentice candidates wanting to become licensed in those areas; availability and number of mentors selected and their work load; eligibility of apprentice applicants to enroll in an educator preparation program; or any potential funding limitations.
In the Spotlight
This week, we wish to recognize our very capable Deputy Superintendent of Public Instruction, Chad Auer, and commend him for the impressive work he has done on several fronts in the past few months: (1) holding down the fort here at the WDE while I’ve been gone campaigning, (2) traveling the state conducting a series of roundtables reviewing the safety/security of our community schools (see his progress update memo to me here), and (3) representing Wyoming at a national think tank hosted by the Hunt Institute and SAS on Covid-related learning loss (see highlight video here).
As my first hire here at the WDE, Chad has proven to be a huge asset both to our agency and the school districts we serve. He’s a good listener, a careful thinker, articulate communicator, and provides balanced leadership in terms of his work ethic and decision-making skills. Moreover, the counsel he provides on any given issue will always be honest and well-reasoned.
Though he does not like the spotlight, we would be remiss not to put him in it. His contribution to Wyoming K-12 education in the short time he has been in his role has been significant and we are grateful for his passionate commitment to the work of the WDE. Chad, you are the man, and therefore … You are In The Spotlight!
As indicated in legislation, the $4,000 National Board Certification state stipend is still in place. The Wyoming National Board Certification Initiative will support teachers pursuing certification for the next two candidate cycles (2022-23 and 2023-24 school years). Go here for more information.
Mark Your Calendars
Applications are now being accepted for the United States Senate Youth Program (USSYP), a unique educational experience and scholarship opportunity sponsored by the U.S. Senate for outstanding high school students who are interested in pursuing careers in public service.
Find out more information about the program here.
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