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Committee Proposes Extending Funding For Wyoming Cowboy ChalleNGe Academy

Wyoming Cowboy ChalleNGe Academy

A program that helps at-risk teens could get its state funding extended. The Joint Transportation, Highways, and Military Affairs Committee has drafted a bill that will extend state financial support for the Wyoming Cowboy ChalleNGe Academy.

The academy is part of a National Guard initiative that recruits at-risk teens who have either dropped out of school or are thinking of dropping out of school. At the Cowboy ChalleNGe Academy in Guernsey, about 250 cadets attend the military-style program and earn a high-school equivalency certificate each year.

Committee Chair David Zwonitzer says the program not only helps the cadets with their behavior and education, but is also positive for Wyoming.

"Well what we find out is that these folks can be integrated back into society. It keeps them out of our jail systems, out of our court systems, and that is a win for the state," says Zwonitzer.

The proposed legislation would extend the state’s matching funds until 2025. The full legislature will vote on the bill in the 2016 legislative session.

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