Category Archives: News Releases

News releases from the Wyoming Department of Education

WDE Seeks Public Comment on Chapter 20 and Chapter 2 Rules On Student Transportation

CHEYENNE – The Wyoming Department of Education (WDE) seeks public comment on Chapter 20 and Chapter 2 rules concerning student transportation.

During the 2019 Legislative session, HEA0125 repealed the moratorium on the purchase of student transportation vehicles. The proposed revision of Chapter 20 rules incorporates legislative mandates that include: defining procedures for and conditions under which school districts may procure student transportation vehicles; establishing a mileage and age replacement schedule for student transportation vehicles; and establishing a competitive bid process for student transportation vehicle procurement.

The proposed revision of Chapter 2 rules incorporates National School Transportation Specifications and Procedures by reference. Changes in manufacturing processes and mechanical and technological advances have significantly affected the design, production, and performance of school buses and other student transportation vehicles.

Chapter 20 references Chapter 2 rules in several sections; therefore, the proposed rule revisions are being promulgated together. More information on the changes to the rules is available in the Statement of Reasons.

Public comment on these rule revisions is open from July 3, 2019 through August 17, 2019. Comments can be submitted online or mailed to:

Wyoming Department of Education
Attn: Justin Budd
122 West 25th St., Suite E200
Cheyenne, WY 82002

All public comments will be recorded verbatim, including the submitter’s name and city of residence. When commenting, please specify which rule change the comment is concerning.

In addition, the WDE will hold a public hearing for Chapter 20 rules from 6-8 p.m. on Tuesday, August 20 in the Laramie County School District #1 Storey Gym Boardroom, 2811 House Ave. in Cheyenne.  Anyone who wishes to join the hearing virtually and provide public comment must register by noon on Wednesday, August 19. It is not necessary to register to attend the hearing in person.

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Media Contact:
Michelle Panos, Communications Director
michelle.panos1@wyo.gov
307-777-2053

WDE Seeks Public Comment on Chapter 29 Rules: Evaluation Systems for District and School Leaders and Teachers

CHEYENNE – The Wyoming Department of Education (WDE) seeks public comment on the Chapter 29 Rules: Evaluation Systems For District And School Leaders And Teachers. These rules are being revised following the passage of HEA0061 during the 2019 Legislative session, which requires the implementation and administration of a comprehensive teacher evaluation system.

Chapter 29 consists of two parts. One focuses on leader evaluation systems and the other addresses teacher evaluation systems. Most of the changes to Chapter 29 focus on the teacher evaluation systems. Under the proposed rules, the State Board of Education (SBE) will only approve evaluation systems for leaders in the school district, and teachers who provide direct instruction to students. Approval of evaluation systems for other certified personnel, including nurses or instructional facilitators, will no longer be required. More information on the changes is available in the Statement of Reasons.

Public comment on these rule revisions is open from June 17-August 3, 2019. Comments may be submitted online or mailed to:

Laurel Ballard
Wyoming Department of Education
122 W. 25th St. Suite E200
Cheyenne, WY 82002

All public comments will be recorded verbatim, including the submitter’s name and city of residence, on the Secretary of State website as part of the rules promulgation process. When commenting, specify which section of the rule the comment concerns.

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Media Contact:
Michelle Panos, Communications Director
michelle.panos1@wyo.gov
307-777-2053

WDE Seeks Public Comment on Chapter 45 Rules for Special Education

CHEYENNE – The Wyoming Department of Education (WDE) seeks public comment on proposed Chapter 45 Rules: Special Education Out-of-District Placement Appropriation. The comment period is open from June 3, 2019 through July 19, 2019.

During the 2018 Legislative Session, HEA0068 Section 6 directed the WDE to promulgate rules for the distribution of $2 million to make payments to school districts for out-of-district placements of special education students. The Wyoming Legislature appropriated additional funds in an attempt to lessen the burden placed upon school districts to pay for high-cost special education students, while under the limits of the cap on spending for special education services. Chapter 45 Rules and Regulations were drafted as a result of this legislation.

Comments can be submitted online or mailed to:

Wyoming Department of Education
Attn: Trystin Green
122 West 25th Street, Suite E200
Cheyenne, WY 82002

All public comments will be recorded verbatim, including the submitter’s name and city of residence on the Secretary of State website as part of the rules promulgation process. When commenting, specify which section of the rule the comment concerns.

In addition, the WDE will hold a public hearing on the proposed rules from 6-8 p.m. on Thursday, July 18 in the Laramie County School District #1 boardroom, 2811 House Avenue in Cheyenne. Anyone who wishes to join the public hearing and provide public comment via the virtual conference platform Zoom, must register by noon Wednesday, July 17. The public also may attend the meeting to make their comments, and no registration is required to attend the meeting in person.

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Media Contact:
Michelle Panos, Communications Director
michelle.panos1@wyo.gov
307-777-2053

WDE Seeks Public Comment on Chapter 10 Rules and Computer Science Standards

CHEYENNE – The Wyoming Department of Education (WDE) seeks public comment on proposed revisions to the Chapter 10 Rules: Wyoming Content and Performance Standards. In addition, the WDE is seeking public comment on the revised proposed Computer Science Content and Performance Standards that will be incorporated into the Chapter 10 rules.

The revisions to Chapter 10 rules are a result of the passage of Senate Enrolled Act 0048 in 2018 that added computer science and computational thinking to the common core of knowledge and skills for Wyoming students kindergarten through 12th grade. The bill requires the promulgation of uniform content and performance standards for computer science by January 1, 2022, then going into effect beginning with the 2022-23 school year.

The proposed Computer Science Content and Performance Standards were developed and then revised by a standards review committee composed of 40 members, which included educators, professors, parents, content experts, and business and community members.

The comment period is the final opportunity for the public to comment on the Computer Science Content and Performance Standards. Input on the proposed rules and standards will be open, both online and by mail, from May 13-June 28, 2019. The public may comment on one, or both, of these topics.

Comments can be submitted online or mailed to:

Wyoming Department of Education
Attn: Barb Marquer
122 West 25th Street, Suite E200
Cheyenne, WY 82002

All public comments will be recorded verbatim, including the submitter’s name and city of residence, on the Secretary of State website as part of the rules promulgation process.

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Media Contact:
Michelle Panos, Communications Director
michelle.panos1@wyo.gov
307-777-2053

 

WDE Teams Up with Microsoft and CSforALL to Offer Computer Science Strategic Planning

CHEYENNE – The Wyoming Department of Education (WDE) is pleased to announce key support from Microsoft Corp. enabling the department to offer computer science implementation and planning training to school districts. Wyoming will receive over $95,000 in grant funding from Microsoft’s TechSpark initiative to offer Strategic CSforALL Resource & Implementation Planning Tool (SCRIPT) training for school districts. CSforALL is an organization dedicated to making computer science part of every K-12 student’s education.

SCRIPT training provides districts with strategic planning tools to think through what is needed to provide equitable, high-quality computer science education available to all students in their districts. Through a series of self-assessment and goal-setting activities, districts will develop a computer science education vision and roadmap for implementation.

“The WDE is excited to work with Microsoft and CSforALL on this project,” said Wyoming Superintendent of Public Instruction, Jillian Balow. “The Wyoming Legislature gave us the directive to prepare students to compete in a world that is more and more technology based, by incorporating computer science education into our classrooms by 2023. A priority of the WDE is to provide districts with the support they need to succeed.”

“Computer science skills are going to be fundamental as employers in every industry from agriculture to transportation uses technology to innovate and compete in the economy,” said Dennis Ellis, manager of Microsoft’s TechSpark Wyoming, an initiative to partner with rural and smaller metropolitan communities to spark new economic opportunities and job creation. “Making computer science education an opportunity within reach of every student ensures Wyoming’s children can be future ready and will make our state attractive to public and private investments that can drive economic growth.”

Districts must apply to attend, and those serving substantially rural and under-served students will be given priority. Participants will include district leaders and school leaders, media/tech facilitators and educators teaching computer science.

Training will occur in five locations and will be open to six districts in each location. Each training consists of several sessions over a year.

  • Casper: May 14 & 15, 2019, Oct. 15, 2019 and May 20, 2020.
  • Rock Springs: June 4 & 5, 2019, Nov. 14, 2019, and June 4, 2020.
  • Cheyenne: June 11 & 12, 2019, Nov. 19, 2019, and June 11, 2020.
  • Worland: Aug. 5 & 6, 2019, Jan. 7, 2020, and Aug. 6, 2020.
  • Gillette: Sept. 24 & 25, 2019, Feb. 25, 2020, and Sept. 24, 2020.

“Our WDE school support team worked hard with Microsoft to provide this support for schools,” Balow said. “We will continue to identify important resources as we implement computer science education.”

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Media Contact:
Michelle Panos, Communications Director
michelle.panos1@wyo.gov
307-777-2053

Public Listening Sessions Scheduled to Inform CTE Plans for Wyoming

CHEYENNE – The Wyoming Department of Education (WDE) will host stakeholder listening sessions throughout the state in April to gather feedback on how Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education grant funding will be administered in Wyoming over the next five years. The Perkins Act provides the majority of funding for Career and Technical Education (CTE) in Wyoming. Congress passed the latest version of the Perkins Act (Perkins V) in July 2018, known as the “Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act.” Originally passed as the Vocational Education Act of 1963, it was renamed the Carl D. Perkins Act in 1984 and reauthorized in 1998 and 2006.

“First, I want to thank Senator Mike Enzi for leading the way in getting this important legislation reauthorized last year,” said State Superintendent of Public Instruction Jillian Balow. “Perkins funds will provide over $5 million to Wyoming during the 2019-20 school year for Career and Technical Education for our youth, and for adults who go back to school to explore new career opportunities. Wyoming, please help shape our new Perkins plan that will be written over the next year.”

The WDE will host sessions from 9-11 a.m., 1-3 p.m., and 5:30-7:30 p.m. in each location to accommodate industry partners, local educators, parents, students, and community members who are interested in sharing their thoughts on CTE in Wyoming. Dates and locations include:

  • Thursday April 11, 2019 Eastern Wyoming Community College, Room #131, 3200 W. C St., Torrington.
  • Friday April 12, 2019 Laramie County Community College, Union Pacific Room #130,1400 E. College Drive, Cheyenne.
  • Monday April 15, 2019 Casper College SH #217, 125 College Drive, Casper.
  • Tuesday April 16, 2019 Northern Wyoming Community College Flex Space in the Tech Center, 300 W. Sinclair, Gillette.
  • Wednesday April 17, 2019 Sheridan School District #2 Administrative Offices in Boardroom, 201 N. Connor St., Sheridan.
  • Thursday April 18, 2019 Northwest Community College Trapper Room, 231 W. 6th St., Powell.
  • Tuesday April 23, 2019 Western Wyoming Community College Room #1309, 2500 College Drive, Rock Springs.
  • Wednesday April 24, 2019 Central Wyoming Community College PTC 150, 2660 Peck Ave., Riverton.
  • Monday April 29, 2019 Virtual Meeting via ZOOM  or via phone at 1-669-900-6833, Meeting ID: 493 757 259.

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Media Contact:
Michelle Panos, Communications Director
michelle.panos1@wyo.gov
307-777-2053

Public Listening Sessions Scheduled to Inform CTE Plans for Wyoming

CHEYENNE – The Wyoming Department of Education (WDE) will host stakeholder listening sessions throughout the state in April to gather feedback on how Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education grant funding will be administered in Wyoming over the next five years. The Perkins Act provides the majority of funding for Career and Technical Education (CTE) in Wyoming. Congress passed the latest version of the Perkins Act (Perkins V) in July 2018, known as the “Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act.” Originally passed as the Vocational Education Act of 1963, it was renamed the Carl D. Perkins Act in 1984 and reauthorized in 1998 and 2006.

WDE Seeks Public Comment on Chapter 14 Rules

CHEYENNE – The Wyoming Department of Education (WDE) seeks public comment on proposed revisions to the Chapter 14 Rules: Education Program Approval of Public and Private Institutions Receiving State Funds for the Education Costs of Students. The revisions are a result of the passage of Wyoming Statute 21-13-336 in 2016 (SEA 0034).

The current rules (from 2006) detail the requirements for institutional schools in cases where Wyoming students are placed by court order; however, there are no requirements addressing placement due to medical necessity. The revised rules will define the expectations that institutions and facilities must meet in order to receive payment from the WDE for the educational costs of students placed by a court order, or placed for medical necessity as verified by the Wyoming Department of Health. The proposed revisions are a combination of rules and regulations for both W.S. 21-13-315 and W.S. 21-13-336.

Public comment on the proposed rules is open, both online and by mail from through April 30, 2019. Comments can be submitted online or mailed to:

Wyoming Department of Education
Attn: Jo Ann Numoto
122 West 25th Street, Suite E200
Cheyenne, WY 82002

All public comments will be recorded verbatim, including the submitter’s name and city of residence, on the Secretary of State website as part of the rules promulgation process. When commenting, please specify which rule change the comment is concerning.

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Media Contact:
Michelle Panos, Communications Director
michelle.panos1@wyo.gov
307-777-2053

State Superintendent Partners with Industry and CTE Teachers to Improve Hathaway Scholarship

CHEYENNE – Wyoming Superintendent of Public Instruction Jillian Balow applauds a new law that provides greater flexibility for Wyoming students to qualify for a Hathaway Scholarship.

“After years of work with industry and career and technical teachers, I am proud that Wyoming took one more step toward recognizing the viability of the trades and career readiness training,” said State Superintendent of Public Instruction Jillian Balow. “With this bill, we can help deliver the skilled workforce that Wyoming industries need, no matter if that’s a four-year degree or specialized training. Whatever our cars will run on in the future, we’re still going to need mechanics with advanced skills to keep them on the road. We need welders, electricians, plumbers, carpenters and wind turbine technicians. Also, with Wyoming leading the way in blockchain technology, there is a growing demand for computer coders, tech engineers, and developers.”

Senate File 43, signed into law today by Governor Mark Gordon, expands Hathaway Scholarship opportunities. Wyoming students with an aptitude and passion for specialty trades now have more options for meeting the Hathaway Success Curriculum requirements in high school.

For 2019 and 2020 high school graduates, students can take either the current Success Curriculum or the new amended curriculum. The new Success Curriculum will take full effect in the 2021 school year.

The Wyoming Department of Education will provide guidance for school districts, institutions of higher learning, parents, and students later this month

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CTE

Media Contact:
Michelle Panos, Communications Director
michelle.panos1@wyo.gov
307-777-2053

WDE Helps Champion Wyoming Cowboy ChalleNGe Academy’s Educational Accreditation

CHEYENNE – The Wyoming Department of Education (WDE) announced Tuesday the Wyoming Cowboy ChalleNGe Academy (WCCA) in Guernsey received its educational accreditation from AdvancEd, a national non-profit organization that accredits educational institutions based on standards of quality. Of all the National Guard-sponsored ChalleNGe programs, WCCA is the seventh academy to gain full accreditation.

Credits students earn while attending WCCA are now more easily transferable back to students’ home school districts and will count toward graduation. Several Wyoming schools are AdvancEd accredited in addition to state accreditation.

“I am thrilled to see the Wyoming Cowboy ChalleNGe Academy gain accreditation,” said State Superintendent of Public Instruction Jillian Balow. “WCCA gives each cadet who chooses to attend the academy the opportunity to explore many careers and trades, all while achieving their GED or earning credits toward a diploma.

“This was an incredible partnership we forged with our military, and we look forward to continuing to build on this accomplishment,” Balow added. “Wyoming succeeds when all of our students succeed.”

“Now that WCCA is accredited, we are looking forward to partnering with all Wyoming school districts in providing at-risk youth and non-traditional learners additional options for advancing their educational achievement,” said WCCA Director William Moore. “WCCA’s goal is to maximize a student’s credit recovery so they can rejoin their respective classes and graduate from high school. For those young men and women that can no longer achieve a traditional high school diploma, WCCA aims to provide them with the opportunity to obtain a GED and vocational education that will aid them in joining the Wyoming workforce.”

“We’ve been working toward accreditation for some time. I’m pleased our staff’s hard work allows us to continue to provide our state’s at-risk youth an alternative to dropping out of school, while partnering with Wyoming school districts to ensure they are college, career, and military ready,” said Major General Luke Reiner, Wyoming’s adjutant general.

The mission of the Wyoming Cowboy ChalleNGe Academy is to provide a safe, disciplined and professional learning environment that empowers non-traditional learners (ages 16-18) to improve their educational level and employment potential and become responsible productive citizens.

The WDE has developed a fact sheet to help answer questions school district might have, such as how this accreditation impacts districts when a student attends WCCA, then transitions back to his or her home district. This document will be updated as necessary.

For more information about the WCCA, visit wycowboychallenge.org.

WCCACake

Major General Luke Reiner, Adjutant General for Wyoming, and Superintendent of Public Instruction Jillian Balow celebrated the WCCA’s accreditation with a cake ceremony at the WDE offices Tuesday. 

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Media Contact:
Michelle Panos, Communications Director
michelle.panos1@wyo.gov
307-777-2053