State Superintendent Jillian Balow

Aaron Schrank

The Wyoming State Superintendent of Public Instruction announced she’s running for a second term. Jillian Balow said there’s more she wants to do.

Wyoming Department of Education

Following the recent shootings in Florida and Kentucky, educators and policymakers across the country are asking questions about school safety and security. Last year Wyoming’s state legislature made it possible for local school boards to decide as a community whether or not to arm trained staff.

Kamila Kudelska

There are over 500 open computing jobs in Wyoming, amounting to roughly $30 million in wages not flowing into the state. That’s according to Code.org, a non-profit that has partnered with the Wyoming Department of Education to expand access to computer science in schools.

 

Wyoming Department of Education

In the final hours of the 120 day review period, the U.S. Department of Education notified Wyoming officials that the state’s Every Student Succeeds Act Plan had been approved.

Wyoming Department of Education

The Every Student Succeeds Act -- or ESSA -- shifted education authority from the federal government to states and local districts, leaving behind the controversial No Child Left Behind Act. But under ESSA, states are still required to demonstrate to the U.S. Department of Education all students have access to an adequate education.

 

The Wyoming Department of Education submitted its ESSA plan in September. Last week, it received a letter from the federal government asking for more information on several points before approval can be given.

www.flickr.com/photos/mujitra/5232270530

Parents are only slightly more comfortable talking with their kids about money than about the birds and the bees. That’s according to John Pelletier, who directs Champlain College’s Center for Financial Literacy.

He said kids need to learn financial skills somewhere, but “the reality is for 80 percent of adults and 80 percent of students who are in high school, they are going to learn through the school of hard knocks.”

Wyoming Department of Education

Wyoming came in seventh out of 17 states in ACT exam scores. Those 17 states all require 100 percent of students to take the test. In some states only college bound students take the test. Final analysis of nationwide scores from 2016 were released this month.

 

Wyoming’s average composite score was 20.2. And while that’s just 0.6 off the national average, it’s far from a perfect score of 36. Most top tier colleges or universities require a score above 31.

 

Wyoming Department of Education

The majority of Wyoming schools are meeting or exceeding expectations, according to the 2016-2017 school performance ratings released Thursday by the Wyoming Department of Education.

State Superintendent Jillian Balow, said the performance ratings are designed to identify schools that need additional support, and she said that system is working. 30 percent of schools are only partially meeting expectations and 11 percent are not meeting them at all.

Wyoming Department of Education

Superintendent of Public Instruction Jillian Balow signed off on Wyoming's Every Student Succeeds Act Plan, ESSA, Thursday, August 17. It will now be submitted to the U.S. Department of Education for approval.

 

The federal education policy fully replaces No Child Left Behind, giving states more authority to define educational goals for students.

 

The U.S. Department of Education still requires every state to submit a plan detailing how it would provide an adequate and equitable education.

 

Wyoming Department of Education

The Wyoming Department of Education has released the results of statewide high school assessments. The ACT test is given to 11th graders, and the ACT Aspire test given to 9th and 10th graders, are used to help predict how well students are prepared for life after high school, whether that's in college or pursuing a career.

 

University of Wyoming Magazine

This school year will be marked by transition for Wyoming educators as they adjust to reduced budgets, new federal policies, and new accountability procedures. And there will also be a new leader in Wyoming to work with these issues.

 

On August 1, Superintendent Jillian Balow welcomed aboard Megan Degenfelder as the new Chief Policy Officer for Wyoming’s Department of Education. Balow said she brought Degenfelder onto the team because of her unique perspective.

 

ENDOW, Economically Needed Diversity Options for Wyoming, logo
ENDOW

The State Superintendent of Public Instruction is concerned that Governor Mead’s executive council focused on diversifying Wyoming’s economy, known as ENDOW, is leaving out K-12 education.

 

Superintendent Jillian Balow made that point recently in a letter to the governor. She said schools should be a part of the economic diversification discussion because public education is one of the largest employers in the state.