One memo and a few photos:
Memos to be released on Monday, June 17
- 2019-074 – Chapter 29 Rules
One memo and a few photos:
Memos to be released on Monday, June 17
This week the Quality Counts report on school finance was released and Wyoming is ranked #1. Looking just beyond the “A” grade that Wyoming received is an important story. Half of the score is based on quantity–how much money is spent on education. The other half of the score represents how fairly money is spread to schools and districts–quality of funding. Here are a few Wyoming-specific highlights:
Here is a link to the report and interactive state reviews.
Memos to be released on Monday, June 10:
The National Center for Education Statistics (The Condition of Education 2019,” a report on education in America today. The report presents 48 indicators in four areas:) recently released “
It also spotlights several issues of policy interest: young adult educational and employment outcomes by family status and postsecondary outcomes for non-traditional undergraduate students (blog post).
Memos to be released on Monday, June 3:
Hats off to all 2019 graduates at every level!
This week recipients of the U.S. Presidential Scholars Program were named. The program honors the nation’s top-performing students and was expanded in 1979 to recognize students who demonstrate exceptional talent in the visual, literary and performing arts. In 2015, the program was again expanded to recognize students who demonstrate ability and accomplishment in career and technical education fields.
Congratulations to this year’s Wyoming Presidential Scholars:
Former State Superintendent Judy Catchpole received an honorary doctorate from the University of Wyoming.
Memos to be released on Tuesday, May 28:
This week saw the first of several CSforAll SCRIPT trainings for educators to help bring computer science and computational thinking to every Wyoming classroom by 2022.
Wyoming received more than $93,000 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.
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.
Educators, industry partners and WDE teammates took time for a group photo at the CSforALL SCRIPT training in Casper this week.
CSforALL SCRIPT training asked educators to work on how to engage their communities to help bring computer science to the classroom. The groups then shared out in a ‘gallery walk’ to promote and share ideas.
The leadership group from Prairie Wind Elementary in Cheyenne came to the WDE offices Friday to discuss education policy and leadership with Chief Policy Director Kari Eakins. The group also got a tour and talked with WDE teammates.
Memos to be released:
On Monday, May 13, Governor Gordon will proclaim May as Military Appreciation Month – I look forward to attending the ceremony and celebration. Military Appreciation Month was introduced by Senator John McCain and passed by Congress in 1999.
We would love to help you celebrate past and present military servicemen and women in your schools using social media. Send photos and blurbs to email@example.com. Here are a few observances during the month of May:
Military Spouse Appreciation Day
Date: Friday, May 10th, 2019. The Friday before Mother’s Day is a day to honor military spouses.
Armed Forces Day
Date: Saturday, May 18th, 2019. A day (and the week leading up to it) to thank our military members for their patriotic service in support of our country.
Date: Monday, May 27th, 2019. Commemorates the men and women who died while in military service.
Early in the week I had a visit from a retired Wyoming education leader, Bill Hardesty, who now works with Troops to Teachers. The program’s tagline is “Proud to Serve Again” and assists veterans who want to become classroom teachers.
When you hire a veteran, you bring unique skills, experiences, and dedication to your schools and students. Skills needed to be successful in the military transfer nicely to the classroom and community.
Bill Hardesty of Troops to Teachers visited the WDE to share the work of the organization during Military Appreciation Month.
Tech directors met in Casper this week. There were great conversations about district tech infrastructure, computer science standards, professional development, leadership, the legislature, and much more.
Memos to be released on Monday, May 13:
Staff at the Wyoming Department of Education (WDE) are coordinating multiple opportunities for professional development this summer. We are excited about offering new and established events for Wyoming’s educators. Thank you for partnering with us to ensure all trainings are relevant, timely, and substantial. The best way to stay abreast is via the WDE website and social media:
Here’s a sneak peek at some of what we will offer and/or coordinate this summer:
We look forward to learning from one another and national experts!
Memo to be released on Monday, May 6:
Last week Wyoming’s State Board of Education (SBE) unanimously voted to move forward with the process to adopt the K-12 content and performance standards for Computer Science. Below are links to the standards along with a letter from the standards development committee comprised of teachers, members from business and industry, parents, and others. The next phases of Boot Up Wyoming include rules promulgation and a shift in focus from standards development to standards implementation.
Wyoming has three years to fully implement the standards. Implementation, as with other content areas, includes efforts by educators to unpack standards, select curriculum, reset scopes and sequences for integration, and seek professional development. This work is familiar to educators and the Wyoming Department of Education (WDE) stands ready to facilitate opportunities and assist in the work. There are also other entities poised to support the implementation of Computer Science including UW and community colleges, Wyoming Professional Teaching Standards Board (PTSB), business and industry, tech companies and experts, the WDE, and schools that have already implemented Computer Science.
Via memos, professional development events, social and traditional media, grant/funding opportunities, and technical assistance the WDE will continue to broker opportunities for educators to onboard the new standards.
School Climate Document from USED:
The Federal Commission on School Safety released recommendations after a series of listening sessions. One recommendation addressed the topic of school climate and student well-being. This week USED released The Parent and Educator Guide to School Climate Resources. The guide was produced jointly by the Department’s Office of Elementary and Secondary Education (OESE) and Office for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS) and it provides best practices and resources that parents and educators can utilize as they work to achieve a positive school climate, lower disciplinary issues, and enhance school safety.
There are no memos this week.
Next week my family welcomes my daughter home from a military deployment in the Middle East. For so many reasons I am a proud mom – but I’ll save the bragging for a different time. Through high school and since graduation, she has had countless opportunities to learn. Throughpathways in high school she earned FFA degrees and deepened her knowledge of agriculture. She also became a Certified Nurse’s Assistant (CNA) and earned college credits through dual enrollment. During her tenure as a soldier she has served her country, trained, traveled, and earned a semester’s worth of college credits. As a mom and educator, I love how college, career, and military readiness has evolved to mean more than three singular pathways after high school. Today, all three paths (or any combination therein) prepare the next generation of adults for success and fulfillment through coursework, training, experience, and discovery.
According to a Bureau of Labor Statistics study, a group of baby boomers (now nearing retirement or retired) changed jobs 11.7 times during their careers. Most economists agree that today’s millennials are on-track to change jobs more times during their careers. This means that lifelong learning is more important than ever and exposure to foundational and executive skills is key.
I’ll add three final thoughts:
Over the past couple of weeks, WDE’s Dr. Michelle Aldrich and herteam have traveled across the state to conduct listening sessions for Perkins V. Stakeholder participation for these events has been immense and we are so encouraged that Wyoming is interested in steering the career and technical education ship. Of note, Perkins V:
In Wyoming, we look forward to leveraging Perkins V as a way to ensure that all students have opportunities to discover and acquire valuable skills as they make choices about college, career, and military readiness.
Memos to be released on Monday, April 22:
Over the past eighteen months it’s been a privilege to contribute to a book project about rural education. The book, No Longer Forgotten: The Triumphs and Struggles of Rural Education in America was released earlier this week. I am grateful to have taught in a rural Wyoming school (Hulett) and believe our smallest communities have more strengths than challenges. My small town experiences are with me in every policy discussion as State Superintendent. Here are a few takeaways from the book and panel:
If you are interested in watching the panel, here is the link:
Here is an article summarizing a few main ideas from the book:
This week at the annual Council of Chief State School Officers () convening we had many discussions about Social and Emotional Learning (SEL). I wanted to share three diverse documents on the topic because I know we all (leaders, school boards, parents, and teachers) are thinking about the SEL issues, such mental health, and its role education. None of the documents come with a specific endorsement from me other than having found each one insightful and thought-provoking:
THERE ARE NO MEMOS THIS WEEK.