The Legislature’s Joint Education Interim Committee produced a number of noteworthy bills for lawmakers to consider when they return to Cheyenne next month.
They include a bill to fund School Resource Officers and launch a school safety tip line—as well as a constitutional amendment that would ask voters if they’d like to see the state’s schools chief appointed instead of elected.
The Committee wrapped up its final meeting in Jackson Thursday, passing 5 bills in all. Some others would create a task force on distance education and create reciprocity agreements between community colleges in Wyoming and those in other states.
House Chairman Matt Teeters pushed the school safety bill, which, among other things, would fund one-third the cost of School Resource Officers—or SROs—at districts who can’t afford them, and also fund teachers to be trained as peace officers.
“We took a real simple approach that I think is going to deal with a lot of the concerns that people have,” says Teeters. “We’ve had a lot of discussions about arming teachers and different things. This would allow school districts to send teachers to the state law enforcement academy, so they would get the full traning that a peace officer would get. For rural schools that cannot afford an SRO, I think it’s a really brilliant compromise.”
Thursday was Teeters’ last day on the job. The Goshen County representative was voted out of office in November.
The full legislature will consider these education bills and more when it convenes January 13.