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SBE conducts audit workshop for math and science standards


CHEYENNE, Wyo. (KIFI) – As a starting point for a rigorous examination of the current K-12 standards, the Wyoming State Board of Education (SBE) recently convened key stakeholders from across the state to conduct an audit in the content areas of math and science. 

At its October meeting, a resolution to address the load of state standards was approved by the board. The number of state standards was a concern heard through both Governor Mark Gordon’s Reimagining and Innovating the Delivery of Education (RIDE) Advisory Group and the SBE’s Profile of a Graduate (POG) listening sessions. Stakeholders shared a desire for students to have greater opportunities to apply academic learning to other subject areas and real-world experiences.

In POG listening sessions conducted by the SBE, stakeholders consistently stated that while students may be learning and testing on a set of complex knowledge and skills, it may not always translate into an ability to transition into a world of independent living, a college setting, or the workplace. The profile calls for communities, schools, business and industry to collaborate in providing opportunities to apply learning in preparations for life after graduation. 

Wyoming currently has 1,877 K-12 content standards across 10 content areas. This often creates a need for teachers and schools to determine which standards they have time to adequately teach to mastery. A variance in the standards prioritized by districts also raises concerns regarding the constitutionally protected right to a uniform education system across the state. Through prioritization and focusing on the state standards, the board seeks to create time for innovation and opportunities for meaningful learning, both within and outside the classroom.

The audit of math and science standards will inform the SBE Standards Committee in making recommendations to the board, while ensuring academic rigor is preserved. This will allow educators to delve more deeply into learning concepts, and offer more opportunities for students to apply what they have learned in a variety of environments and situations.  

“As the chair of the state board, it was impressive to see the work of these educators as they conducted the audit of the math and science standards,” said Ryan Fuhrman. “The board is committed to honoring the voices of Wyoming stakeholders that were captured in our work to develop a Profile of a Graduate. We believe that by working to create a more focused, cohesive set of standards, we will provide better clarity and capacity for Wyoming educators to meet the needs of Wyoming students, and Wyoming’s future, alike.”

The work of the audit teams will be presented to the SBE and the Curriculum Directors' Advisory Committee. The board will ensure multiple opportunities for public input as the work moves forward.

Article Topic Follows: Education

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