Archive for the ‘Cindy Hill’ Tag

Wyoming Teacher of the Year Stands Up For Liberty in Education   2 comments

Cindy Hill, State Superintendent of Wyoming, stood up against federal insurgence into the state-held right to educate. She stood up against nationalized testing. She opposed Common Core.

For having the backbone and integrity to do these things, she has been stripped of her Wyoming Constitutional rights as superintendent, has been given ceremonial duties only, has been moved out of her office into a museum, and she’s had her former role replaced by an invented position dubbed “Department of Education Director”.

Big Wyoming newspapers slam Cindy Hill. Small Wyoming papers defend her. Thousands of citizens signed a petition to get Cindy Hill reinstated. A lawsuit on the matter is ongoing.

Cindy Hill keeps fighting– not just for her job and her rights, but for the proper role of government in this precedent-setting drama.

Here’s a letter to the editor of WYOfacts news, in defense of Cindy Hill, that moved me. It’s written by former teacher of the year Joan Brummond.

Thank you, Joan, for setting the example in speaking out, regardless of personal consequences.

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July 22, 2013

To the Editor:

I worked for Cindy Hill before she became Superintendent of Public Instruction. She is a problem solver like few administrators. She keeps the kids in mind in everything she does. I am amazed at her energy and work ethic. I am not at all surprised that in her abbreviated term heading the Wyoming Department of Education, test scores in reading and math went up, an unprecedented improvement. And I know, though she denies it, she is responsible for this positive result. She says it wasn’t her but the teachers who did the work. Well, that’s true, but it takes a leader with the ability to stay focused to do the hard work and achieve the results for kids.

As a life-long educator, a former Teacher of the Year for Wyoming, a member of Leadership Wyoming and a former president of the National State Teachers of the Year, I know a remarkable leader when I see one. Cindy Hill is that person. As a registered democrat, I voted for her because personal knowledge of a person’s integrity and mission to improve the school lives of students, trumps politics every single time.

So I have been outraged and disgusted by the politics behind SF 104. What is going on, political leaders? Why ignore the facts that she did her job and did it legally, morally and responsibly? Why deny the Constitution that gives her general supervision of our schools? Why use my money—and that of all taxpayers—to hold one sham investigation after another. Why make a mockery of the law by trying to impeach her?

No investigation ever uncovered any valid offense. Yet, the legislature is doggedly moving ahead with plans to impeach her, making expensive investigatory committees filled with people who voted against her in the first place. What’s fair about that? We teachers wouldn’t put up with this kind of unfairness on the playground; why put up with it from our lawmakers?

All this furor makes me wonder what her enemies are trying to hide? It makes me wonder if other politicians and bureaucrats need to be investigated, those who just might be skimming off the taxpayer’s bounty.

It’s a dark day in Wyoming politics. I’m like a lot of other people—I’d rather keep my head down and do my own life. But when should we Americans stand up? I’m old enough to remember the Holocaust, to remember and take to heart the words of the minister, Martin Niemoller, who said:

First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out–
Because I was not a Socialist.

Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out–
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.

Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out–
Because I was not a Jew.

Then they came for me–and there was no one left to speak for me.

It’s the American way to stand up. I do it on behalf of the truth and our way of life. Let’s reinstate Cindy Hill to do her work and cut out the nonsense. Our students are losing precious time.

Joan Brummond, former Teacher of the Year

Wyoming to Stop Common Core   9 comments

This week Alisa and I spoke in Star Valley, Wyoming at the Afton Civic Center.   The event was filmed and I’ll post it when  receive it.

What I learned:

Wyoming is in great shape to reclaim educational liberty and control.   I’m almost jealous of the state’s position.  Why?

1)  Wyoming could walk away from the temptation of federal monies easily because it has strong education funding through state royalties. 

“Each biennium, Wyoming gets about $1.6 billion to $1.8 billion in federal mineral royalty payments (FMRs), which account for a sizable portion of the state’s entire two-year $8.9 billion budget. More FMRs flow to Wyoming than any other state, largely because of extensive coal mining on federal land” – WyoFile.

2) Wyoming only recently (1 year ago) formally adopted Common Core.  The amount of wasted money, time, teacher development and other Common Core-related waste that is happening in other states, has not happened there yet.   It will be so easy to cut bait and walk away, because there’s not a lot of bait to cut.

3)  Wyoming has an enviable state school board.

The Wyoming state school board only voted 8 to 4 to adopt Common Core.  That means that a good chunk of the school board was opposed to it from day one.  Enviable!  (In supposedly conservative Utah each of the board members adore the Obama-pushed Common Core.)

Perhaps best of all, the Wyoming state superintendent, Cindy Hill, really gets it– she fights for local control of educational quality and liberty.  She recently gave a speech to her state legislature about the foolishness of being federal-compliance-focused rather than having a “laser-like focus” on academic excellence.

Hill had refused to throw her state under the national testing bus and was severely punished for her wisdom.  She  was recently pushed aside and relieved of virtually all her powers and duties except for ceremonial and paperwork duties, because she opposed the federal-compliance mentality of the majority of the Wyoming School Board.  Hill’s powers were reassigned –not by a vote, but by an appointment–  to the new position:  Director of Education, one who would dance the dance of federal compliance more cheerfully.

But Wyoming citizens rose up in protest, getting thousands and thousands of citizens to sign a petition to vote on the issue and to get Cindy Hill reinstated with her full powers.

4) Wyoming has strong, devoted people who value local control and are not willing to give it away.

 

Wyoming, we love you.  Go, Fight, Win!

 

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Sign the Wyoming Petition to STOP COMMON CORE here.

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