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Lawmakers discuss innovation

The Joint Education Committee wrapped up two days of meetings talking about everything from improving Native American education to better uses of technology in the classroom.  

Glenrock Senator Jim Anderson   says lawmakers have had some distractions in recent months with the controversy surrounding Superintendent Cindy Hill, but he says they are moving forward with some good ideas.

“If we are not doing it, at least we are starting to lay some framework and some discussion and open people’s minds to the idea of new options and new alternatives.”

Wyoming lawmakers are also continuing to look at the idea of early childhood education, something Anderson says he’s waited on for 17 years.   Supporters say it would help low income students succeed in the classroom.  While many would like every school district to provide early childhood education, House Education Committee Chairman Matt Teeters says that it would be difficult for the state to pay for it across the state.  But  he would be interested in providing limited funding.

“One of the things I was discussing with some of the other members is looking at the possibility of providing some funding to districts that have extremely low graduation rates.  I think we could show that could work.  The most important thing in providing the basket of goods is that provide that K-12 education.  That’s our primary function.” 

Laramie Representative Cathy Connolly said it was also exciting to look at innovative ways to deliver education via the internet and in other forms.  On another matter, the committee voted to support legislation that would require up to eight hours of suicide prevention education for teachers and school administrators.

Bob Beck retired from Wyoming Public Media after serving as News Director of Wyoming Public Radio for 34 years. During his time as News Director WPR has won over 100 national, regional and state news awards.
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