The Center for Education Reform gives Wyoming's charter school law a low D.
Rep. Sue Wallis (R-Gillette) wants to improve the law after hearing Bill Gates speak at the National Conference of State Legislators conference this summer. Rep. Wallis is also the chair of the Wyoming charter school association so she knows first-hand the obstacles faced by charter applicants in the state.
The Wyoming Board of Education recently denied a charter high school's waiver request to offer teachers an annual contract. In comparison, charter school teachers operate on at-will contracts without any guarantee of continued employment at all.
In reporting the possibility of new legislation, the Billing Gazette exposed its bias by stating:
When 100 students or so leave a traditional school for a charter school, the district loses state money for those students.The article's author failed to note that the district authorizing a new charter school of 100 students no longer has the responsibility to educate those students. Colorado's charter school law permits authorizers to retain up to 5% of the per student funding to cover administrative costs for charter school oversight.
In Wyoming, charter school founders must persevere through intense opposition and stigmatization and yet often end up without a charter school. That could be why there are only two charter schools currently operating in Wyoming.