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Wyoming P-16 Council to Meet Friday in Cheyenne

February 13, 2008

Members of Wyoming's P-16 Council will meet Friday, Feb. 15, starting at 8 a.m. in Room 1114 of the Herschler Building in Cheyenne. The meeting is open to the public.

Gov. Dave Freudenthal launched the new public-private council last summer. The council's mission is to improve education and smooth the transition between each level of schooling in Wyoming, says council President Rollin Abernethy, associate vice president for academic affairs at the University of Wyoming. He says the council includes representatives from the business community, legislators, educators from pre-school (P) through college (grade 16) and the Wyoming Department of Education.

Abernethy says one of the council's overarching goal is to increase the percentage of ninth grade Wyoming students who pursue formal postsecondary education, which may include technical, community college or university programs. In Wyoming, only about 44 percent of ninth graders now pursue a postsecondary track, although the graduation rate of Wyoming high school students is more than 82 percent.

The council's morning agenda includes: reports on council by-laws, a Hathaway Scholars long-team outcomes study, and policy recommendations to meet workforce and economic needs and to improve the educational system to assure a successful future for our citizens.

Other morning sessions include a data presentation by Wyoming Department of Education personnel and a discussion on pre-school through third grade. An update on the State Scholars Initiative and goals of the council will be presented during lunch.

The afternoon session includes a discussion of activities to support goals and identifying agenda items for the next meeting. A facilitated afternoon session will lead to definition of the Council's overall objectives for the next two years, including articulation of course content, WISER (Wyoming Integrated Statewide Education Record) IDs for students and staff, and preschool evaluations.

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