In a report on the status of Wyoming’s schools released last week, State Superintendent of Public Instruction Cindy Hill says that the Legislature has overstepped its authority when it comes to education issues in the state.
Hill says lawmakers have used their responsibility for funding K-12 education as an excuse to manage it.
“The legislature has the power of the purs
e,” says Hill. “Yes, they’re responsible for funding, but not all of the decisions that are related.”
Hill says that’s led to legislation that is out-of-touch with the school districts.
Hill’s report says the power has been peeled away from the Superintendent’s office over the years. It comes as state officials seek public input on education governance.
Last month, the Legislative Analyst’s Office released survey results showing that the majority of Wyomingites would prefer an appointed schools chief to an elected Superintendent. Hill says that would be a step in the wrong direction.
“When you had a Governor-appointed education director, that person worked specifically for the Governor of the state,” said Hill. “They were appointed by and worked for the Governor of the state. The elected Superintendent is accessible—and should be—to every stakeholder.”
Superintendent Hill has just a few more months left on the job. Republican Jillian Balow and Democrat Mike Ceballos are vying to succeed Hill in the upcoming November 4 election.