FCSD #21 Unification
The Board of Trustees of Fremont County School District No. 21 has unanimously voted to pursue unification of its school district. There is hereby presented to you a petition for an existing school district which includes both a high school (being Fort Washakie Charter High School) and an elementary school, with total K-12 enrollment of more than 500 pupils, petitioning your support for the creation of a new unified school district, being known as Fremont County School District No. 21, State of Wyoming. This proposal will not change the boundaries of any school districts. Likewise, it will not change the assessed valuation of any school districts. Fremont County School District No. 21 currently provides education for high school for grades 9-12 through the Fort Washakie Charter High School. There are numerous problems and complexities which arise from having a separate charter high school which is not part of a unified school district. The proposed plan would unify the existing high school with the elementary school, which unification would enable the students residing within FCSD#21 to remain in their home district and acquire all the necessary and appropriate education to allow those students to meet all Wyoming performance standards and graduation requirements within a unified K-12 public school system. Unification would provide an improved and more equalized educational opportunity for all pupils. It will give the resident students of FCSD#21 an equal opportunity for a complete quality education within their own district. These students currently in grades K-8 are educated utilizing the curriculum, teaching styles, educational methodology, sequencing, policies, and customs of FCSD#21. These students, upon completion of eighth grade, are currently required to abruptly transfer out of their home district to another community; a community which frequently has different educational philosophies, policies, programs and curriculum paths. In some cases, the new district will utilize different teaching methods, have different conduct and discipline expectations, and different customs and social expectations. Unification will provide an improved and more equalized educational opportunity for all FCSD#21 students. Unification will also improve and equalize education for all pupils in the state. After unification, Districts that FCSD#21 students attended for their high school education will receive only those students who desire to transfer, rather than those forced to attend those districts. These will be students who are comfortable with and believe they can succeed in another school district. This will free up time and resources for the other districts that tried to accommodate students who were forced to attend a district they were not comfortable, and who struggled to adjust in a different educational and social system. Unification will provide a wiser and more efficient use of public funds for education, and will make allowance for local conditions, special needs, problems, and educational cost differentials to achieve financial parity among school districts. The reorganization will eliminate the need to split funds between the public school and charter school. Funding from the State is already provided for the ADM of students attending Fort Washakie Charter High School and, as a result, there will be no change in funding for those students. After unification, FCSD#21 high school would still provide all the same benefits and opportunities that are currently available through the charter school, only with the advantage of administration under one board and through a single accredited and unified school district. In May of 2012, FCSD #21, inlcuding FWCHS, was among one of the first school districts in Wyoming to achieve full Advanced Ed/ NCA District Accreditation. The proposed unification of FCSD #21 is also consistent with the stated intent of Wyoming reorganization laws to create unified school districts throughout the state. W.S. §21-6-207(b) (ii).