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Aaron Schrank

School Facilities Funding Unknown

A funding crisis brought on by a downturn in the coal industry has left policy makers struggling to figure out how to fund education. This year school districts took a hit of $34 million to their operating budgets. That’s primarily money for teachers and staff, as well as materials and supplies. But the funding for school construction and maintenance is also running out. At a recent meeting on school finance, Matt Willmarth, senior school finance analyst with the Legislative Service Office,...

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Join us for an afternoon with NPR political correspondent, Don Gonyea, July 19th at 5:30 p.m. in Jackson, WY. The event will include a chat with Don Gonyea as well as a question and answer session.

Madelyn Beck/Inside Energy

 

The Gillette Workforce Center had a front row seat for the town’s coal woes.

The office has cream-colored walls, decorated with motivational posters and pictures of coal mines. Vermona Petersen is the manager of the center, which helps people find a new job.

“At the height of the layoffs last year, we were seeing between 250 and 300 people a day,” she said. 

Wyoming coal mines laid off more than 450 workers last March amid financial troubles exacerbated by low natural gas prices and debt.

Tennessee Watson

In 2015, No Child Left Behind was replaced by the Every Student Succeeds Act. Known as ESSA, it gives states more authority over K-12 education than they have had in nearly two decades. Now that the two-year transition period is over, ESSA will take effect this fall.

The transition has been met with enthusiasm from Jillian Balow, Superintendent of Public Instruction. She said, “No Child Left Behind was very punitive in nature.” 

Dubois Downtown Fire Rebuild's Ready For Rent

Jun 9, 2017
Leslie Drollinger Stratmoen

Rising from the ashes in Dubois, after a void of more than two years, is a one-story building that stretches across a city block, built of cedar to fit in with the town’s western look. Mayor Twila Blakeman says the new building is a welcome replacement for the black hole left by the fire that destroyed several downtown businesses, including a landmark – Stewart’s Trapline Gallery.

Volunteers carrying toads down to Mortenson Lake
Cooper McKim / Wyoming Public Radio

The Endangered Species Act is threatened. Or at least facing significant reform. Momentum in Congress and in western states is building to make changes to the landmark regulation that protects threatened animal and plant species and their habitats. 

Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

A University of Wyoming professor and her students assisted in the discovery of a new, very hot exoplanet. It’s known as KELT-9b and clocks in at more than 7,800 degrees Fahrenheit, just 2,000 degrees cooler than our sun. It is one of, if not the, hottest planets ever discovered, and orbits very closely to its sun.

Moosejaw Bravo Photography

For nine years now, the Draper Museum in Cody has been studying golden eagles and what they mean for the dwindling sagebrush ecosystem where they live. That study will end next year so Wyoming Public Radio’s Melodie Edwards joined researchers on a trip to band eaglets and find out what all this research is revealing about this iconic species.

Willow Belden

Last year, a mysterious collection of stuffed birds was found at the Laramie high school. It was a discovery that was perplexing at the time, but that would end up being a goldmine for scientists at the University of Wyoming.

It all started last summer, when a biology teacher was packing up her classroom to move to a new building. In the process, she came across some boxes of stuffed birds.

Nobody at the school knew anything about them, and none of the teachers wanted them. So they offered them to the University of Wyoming.

Wyoming Beef Council

Three Japanese food editors visited Wyoming last week to learn more about how beef is raised and cooked in the U.S. The tour was part of a partnership between the Wyoming Beef Council and the U.S. Meat Export Federation. 

Wyoming Beef Council director Ann Wittmann said the U.S. shipped 425 million pounds of beef to Japan alone in 2016. That brought in over $1 billion for U.S. beef producers. Wittmann said Japanese markets also prefer cuts that U.S. consumers don’t have a taste for.

Tennessee Watson

A $462 million operating budget has been approved by the University of Wyoming Board of Trustees for the coming year, which incorporates the most recent $21.8 million reductions in state funding. With uncertainty about whether more cuts are to come, the trustees took measures to transition the university to a more centralized financial system, designed to give officials more control of revenues and expenditures.

 

June Glasson

A new art exhibition at the University of Wyoming explores and expands what it means to live in and love the American West. TOPOPHILIA: A loving reconfiguration of the mythology of our American West through studio practices and collaborative projects has its opening reception tonight from 5 to 7 p.m. at the University of Wyoming Visual Arts Building Gallery, and runs through the end of August.

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Federal Funding

With a new administration and congress, changes are expected and often bring federal funding for public broadcasting into play. We're monitoring this situation very closely.

Topic Of The Week

What do you think about giving communities more power to impose taxes and fees?

Wyoming Summer Music Festivals

Brace yourselves, Wyoming. Summer is here. Plan your music schedule now!

Listen To The Eclipse

Hear stories leading up to this historic event.

Wyoming Sounds

Great music on the western edge! We provide many music genres including Americana, along with Wyoming and regional musicians.

Classical Wyoming

Classical programming brings listeners some of the most beautiful music in the world. Drawn from the heart of the Classical and Romantic repertoires, our programs create the perfect radio companion.

HumaNature Podcast

What happens when a person steps out the front door and comes face to face with the wild world? Find out on our award-winning show where humans and our habitat meet.

Spoken Words Podcast

Spoken Words brings you the origin stories of storytelling. Giving listeners a chance to discover a new writer—or maybe revisit an old favorite with a fresh perspective.

Protect My Public Media

Only you can save our stations. Tell Congress public media matters to you.