CHEYENNE – The Wyoming Department of Education (WDE) today announced the release of Wyoming’s draft Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) State Plan for a 45-day public comment period. The draft plan is available on the WDE’s website.
“This plan builds off of the strengths in Wyoming’s education system and our ongoing commitment to excellence. The goals for our schools are based on our state’s priorities instead of the federal government’s,” said State Superintendent of Public Instruction Jillian Balow. “From standards to accountability to best use of federal funds, ESSA places the responsibility to provide a well-rounded education to every student squarely on our shoulders. A public review of this plan by educators, parents, the employer community, and other citizens is essential. We need to make sure Wyoming kids are put first.”
Superintendent Balow lists the post-secondary readiness indicator and supports for schools and educators as highlights of the draft plan, “We want our students to be ready for their next step after high school, and we’re excited to begin looking at both college and career readiness measures for the first time as a state. We also know from our state accountability model that the way to help schools improve is to make sure they have the right kinds of support and that educators have what they need to do their jobs. Our ESSA state plan will allow us to apply this same strategy with federal funds. We are not here to punish schools and students, we are here to help them do better.”
During this public comment period, the Wyoming Department of Education will convene the Advisory Committee and work with the State Board of Education to convene the Professional Judgement Panel to refine the indicators that will meet the requirements for both accountability models to ensure Wyoming schools operate under a single, coherent system.
Comments can be submitted to the WDE through June 8, 2017 through an online survey, public meetings, or by mail. An online public meeting will take place on May 4 at 6:30 p.m. Anyone wishing to participate can register online. Additional public meetings are tentatively planned to take place on May 11 in Powell, May 18 in Riverton, and June 7 in Laramie.
Comments can be mailed to:
Wyoming Department of Education
Attn: Kari Eakins
2300 Capitol Avenue
Hathaway Building, 2nd Floor
Cheyenne, WY 82002
ESSA reauthorizes the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, the principal federal law affecting K-12 education, and replaces No Child Left Behind.
Kari Eakins, Communications Director