State studies new standards


Board of education seeks input on computer classes

GOSHEN COUNTY – This month, the State Board of Education will host several public input meetings across Wyoming, in addition to collecting responses via an online survey, in reference to proposed updated computer science content and performance standards.

“(Goshen County School District) No. 1 realizes the importance of implementing the computer science skills for our students,” Donna Fields, Director of Curriculum, Instruction and Data Management, told the Telegram. “At this time, we are in the process of reviewing the standards to determine how we will teach, monitor and assess the proposed standards.”

A committee of 40 members – including 16 teachers – recommended the proposed standards, which cover areas including Computing Systems: devices, hardware and software, and troubleshooting; Networks and the Internet: network communication and organization, and cybersecurity; Data Analysis: storage, collection, visualization, and transformation, and inference and models; Algorithms and Programming: algorithms, variables, control, modularity, and program development; and Impacts of Computing: culture, social interactions, and safety, law, and ethics.

“The (Computer Science Standards Review Committee’s) vision is that every student in every school has the opportunity to learn computer science,” the 2019 Wyoming Computer Science Standards draft reads. “We believe that computing is fundamental to understanding and participating in an increasingly technological society, and it is essential for every Wyoming student to learn as part of a modern education. We see computer science as a subject that provides students with a critical lens for interpreting the world around them and challenges them to explore how computing and technology can expand Wyoming’s impact on the world.”

The document goes on to say the standards were developed in accordance with Wyoming State Statute W.S. 21-2-304(c), through the contributions of the committee – comprised of Wyoming parents, educators, and community members, as well as business members from across the state and nation. The committee’s work was informed and guided by initial public input through community forums, as well as input solicited from specific stakeholder groups.

The online survey will be available until 11:59 p.m. on March 5, 2019.

Public input meetings will be held from 6-7:30 p.m. at the following locations:

ν Feb. 25, Green River - SCSD No. 2 Central Administration Office, 351 Monroe Ave.; and Buffalo - JCSD No. 1 Buffalo High School, 29891 Old Hwy 87.

ν Feb. 26, Meeteetse - PCSD No. 16 School Building, 2107 Idaho St.; and Douglas - CCSD #1, Admin. Building, 615 Hamilton St.

ν Feb. 28, Cheyenne - LCSD No. 1, Storey Gym, 2811 House Ave.

A summary of the public input gathered during these meetings will be presented to the SBE at its March meeting, according to a press release. If the SBE moves to adopt the draft standards, an additional public comment period will follow before the new standards are adopted.

Once adopted, school districts will have until the 2022-23 school year to implement the new standards into their curriculum, instruction and assessment system.

“We rely on Wyoming citizens to make the most important policy decisions – computer science is no exception … I have full faith and confidence in (the committee’s) work,” Superintendent of Public Instruction Jillian Balow said. “We value additional input from the public to ensure we do our very best to prepare kids for tomorrow’s world.”

To view the proposed standards or participate in the online survey, visit https://edu.wyoming.gov/educators/standards/.


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