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Jul 9, 2013 - Staff

State waits on NCLB waiver

Wyoming is pushing back by a year its request for a waiver from federal education requirements.

Under the federal No Child Left Behind Act, schools are required to meet rising benchmarks toward all students testing proficient in math and language by 2014. Schools that fail to reach the benchmarks face consequences set by the federal government.

Wyoming is making complicated education reform efforts that would satisfy a waiver from the federal requirements but the state isn't ready to meet the waiver's timeline.

David Holbrook of the state Education Department said trying to meet the federal waiver timeline this year could compromise the quality of Wyoming education reform.

Holbrook says Wyoming will still seek a waiver for the 2014-15 school year.

Money raised for Arizona families

CODY -- The Wyoming Hotshots have raised over $8,000 to help the families of the 19 firefighters killed at the Yarnell Hill Fire in Arizona.

The Hotshots, based at Bighorn National Forest, collected the money during the Stampede Parade in Cody on July 4th. The firefighters and some of their children collected donations with boots and hard hats on the parade route.

Team member Colton McRann of Lander said the tragedy is a reminder of how dangerous their jobs are.

The money will be sent to the Wildland Firefighter Foundation, which will use the money to help the families of the firefighters.

Lubnau rebuffs Hill's claim

CHEYENNE -- Wyoming House Speaker Tom Lubnau has assured state schools Superintendent Cindy Hill that her rights will be protected if a legislative investigation is launched into her administration of the state Education Department.

Lubnau has asked the Legislature's Management Council to empanel a House committee to investigate information in a recent inquiry that Hill may have misused federal funds while she ran the agency. Hill was stripped of her authority over the agency by a new state law enacted this past winter.

Lubnau has proposed that the House Rules Committee should conduct the investigation.

Hill has noted that all members of the committee voted for the new law.

In a reply Monday, Lubnau says he's confident in the integrity and discernment of the committee members.

The Management Council meets Friday.

First meeting for lotto board

CASPER -- The group setting up Wyoming's new lottery is getting organized.

The Wyoming Lottery Corporation board held its first meeting Monday in Casper. The nine members, appointed by Gov. Matt Mead last week, picked Brian Gamroth to serve as chairman.

The board will meet several times in the next few months to decide issues including whether Wyoming will join a multistate lottery or establish its own lottery.

Gamroth says the board is essentially building a corporation "from the paperclips up" and will take the time to it correctly.

The lottery is expected to gross about $25 million in Wyoming, netting about $6 million a year after expenses and prizes. The first $6 million of proceeds will go to local governments. Anything above goes to a school fund.

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