Wyoming Teacher Apprenticeship

Wyoming Department of Education > Superintendent's Update > Wyoming Teacher Apprenticeship

Dear Superintendents,

With the demands of the job and the stressors that go with a profession that is highly people-intensive, each of us at times struggle on various fronts and in various ways with our own leadership prowess. We each have our own strengths and weaknesses, which carry with them their own assets and liabilities. Experience is certainly one of the best instructors, but just as certainly, not the only one.

While some are only open to learning from their own experiences, others are open to learning from the experiences of those who have gone before them. Hopefully, life has done enough of a number on most of us to where we fall into the latter category. If so, the budding School Leaders Training Regimen (SLTR) will become a lifeline for many of our school heads across this state.

Because leadership is sometimes lonely, the SLTR can provide some much needed community. Because leadership is often difficult,  SLTR will provide support. And because leadership is a very deep ocean, this new statewide leadership training paradigm envisions becoming a repository of mentoring, instruction and learning. Led by some of Wyoming’s best and most successful school leaders, this emerging “leadership academy” will prepare our school boards, superintendents and principals to lead their schools more effectively so our schools can lead the nation more proactively. Stay tuned …

Vision & Focus

To learn to think … In math, to learn means computation, to think means application. In history, learning is about what happened, thinking is about who told you what happened.  In science, the learning side comes through observation while the thinking side comes through experimentation. In reading, it’s not only learning how to read, but also distinguishing what is worth reading.

This is where the finer appetites are cultivated, because as C.S. Lewis reminded us, “We are far too easily pleased.” So the more we expose our students to the “great works” of literature, which embody some of the greatest thoughts from some of the greatest minds of all time, the more we teach kids how to think. And with few exceptions, once they’ve had steak, it will be hard for them to go back to hot dogs.

The Primary Priority

We get asked often what the general path of a Wyoming Teacher Apprenticeship (WTA) candidate would look like. When the apprentice completes the program they will have at least a bachelor’s degree. They will also be required to complete on-the-job training, demonstrate on-the-job competencies, receive ongoing, intensive mentorship from experienced teachers, and meet all PTSB licensure requirements. The WTA will not create an alternative pathway to licensure. The graphic below illustrates this:

WTA Image 2

In the Spotlight

August is a very busy month for the WDE School Foundation Program. Data is the lifeblood of the Wyoming Funding Model and August is the time of year when multiple data collections are due to the WDE so that numbers can be crunched and entitlement payments distributed. A big thank you to the SFP team and all of the business managers for your incredible efforts over the past few weeks. It’s because of you that schools have the necessary resources to kick off the new year and continue to provide Wyoming students with a world-class education, and for that….you are “In the Spotlight!”

Mark Your Calendars

The Sixth-annual Wyoming Innovations in Learning Conference will be held virtually on November 3-4, 2022. The Innovations Conference is an opportunity for educators to share and explore innovative teaching and learning practices for classrooms and distance learning environments, from kindergarten through higher education. Don’t miss out on this chance to connect with other inventive educators – register here.

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