State Board of Education approves 10% budget reduction, OK’s leader and teacher evaluation

WYOMING — The Wyoming State Board of Education (SBE) held its annual retreat on July 16-17, 2020 in Casper, and during the retreat, the board took action to approve a 10% General Fund Budget Reduction in addition to the 10% reduction approved on June 19, 2020. The board approved three district submissions of Leader Evaluation Systems and 19 district submissions of Teacher Evaluation Systems.

In other actions, the SBE reviewed their current roles and responsibilities as outlined in the state statute. The board discussed its role in Accountability, Assessment, Accreditation, and other duties as a board. An overview of the SBE’s responsibilities can be found here.

The board continued its discussions on “Redefining Student Success: Profile of a Graduate” facilitated by Gretchen Morgan, Strategy and Policy Fellow with the Center for Innovation in Education. The board received information on various approaches to addressing what it means to be a high school graduate. Discussion included the importance of partnering with State Superintendent of Public Instruction Jillian Balow and working in collaboration with school districts, parents, students, teachers, communities, businesses, technical schools, and higher education in formulating a Wyoming Profile of a Graduate. The following were of key importance to the board:

  • There is a need for clarity about the state’s vision of a high school graduate.
  • There needs to be recognition of both academic and life skills preparation, sometimes referred to as 21st Century Skills.
  • There is recognition that students have a variety of options after high school graduation including college, career, military, and technical training.
  • The process must include all stakeholders and be done in a thoughtful collaborative way.
  • The end result must not add to the current load rather create a more aligned, coherent, and efficient system.

The board acknowledged the importance of beginning conversations with stakeholders, while also being highly cognizant of the current demands facing schools and families as preparations for the fall start of school are being formulated. Board members said they recognized families, students, and schools are learning things right now that may shape the future of education and what it means to be a high school graduate in Wyoming.

The board will continue its discussion on Profiles of a Graduate at its next meeting scheduled on September 24-25, 2020. Information regarding the meeting format will be available on the SBE website.

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