Wyoming Director of the Department of Education

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Wyoming Director of the Department of Education (Eliminated)
General information
Office Type:  Nonpartisan
Office website:  Official Link
2013-2014 FY Budget:  $262,443,291
Term limits:  None
Length of term:   Served at the pleasure of the governor
Authority:  Wyoming State Statutes Title 21
Selection Method:  Appointed by governor
Current Officeholder

Richard Crandall.jpg
Name:  Rich Crandall
Assumed office:  2013
Compensation:  $92,000
Other Wyoming Executive Offices
GovernorLieutenant GovernorSecretary of StateAttorney GeneralTreasurer • Auditors: AuditorDirectorSuperintendent of EducationDirector of EducationAgriculture CommissionerInsurance CommissionerLabor CommissionerPublic Service Commission
The Wyoming Director of the Department of Education was an appointed executive position in the Wyoming state government. The director was the chief education officer in the state.

The position was created by the legislature on January 29, 2013. Previously, the elected Wyoming Superintendent of Public Instruction served as head of the state Department of Education, but the new law made the superintendent a largely ceremonial position.[1] Click here to view the full Senate file text of the law.

In January 2014, the state Supreme Court ruled that the law which established the position of state education director was unconstitutional and the office was eliminated. The superintendent was reinstated as head of the Wyoming Department of Education in April 2014.[2]

Current officeholder

The first and only permanent director was Rich Crandall, a former Republican member of the Arizona State Senate. He was appointed to this position by Gov. Matt Mead (R) in late June 2013 and assumed the role on August 1, 2013.[3][4] Wyoming Community College Commission Executive Jim Rose served in the position on an interim basis prior to Crandall's appointment.[5]

Crandall's position was eliminated following the Supreme Court's January 2014 ruling to reinstate the Wyoming Superintendent of Public Instruction as head of the state Department of Education. The court's decision overturned a piece of 2013 legislation by which a new, appointed department director became the state's top education authority, supplanting the elected office of superintendent. Cindy Hill, the superintendent whose powers were stripped and transferred to the director when the law was passed, sued for the law to be overturned and the court decided in her favor in January 2014. Crandall officially left office in April 2014 after Hill's powers were restored.[2]


The director of the Department of Education's authority was derived from Title 21 of the Wyoming State Statutes.[6]

Title 21, chapter 1-104:

The director shall serve as the administrative head and chief executive officer of the state department of education.

The office of the Director of the Department of Education was created by Senate File 0104 in January 2013.

The summary of the bill read:[7]

AN ACT relating to government administration; establishing the position of director of the department of education by statute; providing duties of the director of the department of education; amending duties of and transferring specified duties from the state superintendent to the director of the state department of education; requiring reporting; providing for transition; and providing for an effective date.


The qualifications for serving as director of the department of education were set out in Title 21-1-104 of the state statutes:[6]

  • Hold a Master's degree in business, public or education administration or other relevant advanced degree from an accredited higher education institution
  • Have a minimum of 10 years of management or administrative experience in education, government or business
  • Provide credentials demonstrating exceptional accomplishment in previous employment
  • Provide evidence of problem-solving skills, organizational skills, education assessment and accountability experience and knowledge of statistical analysis, data management, school finance
  • Possess effective communication skills


Wyoming state government organizational chart

The office of Director of the Department of Education was appointed by the governor, who was provided with a list of three finalists from the State Board of Education.[8]

Term limits

There were no term limits for this office. The director served at the pleasure of the governor and could have been removed at any time.[6]


Article 4, Section 7 of the state constitution granted the governor the authority to fill any office that becomes vacant, so long as there was not already a constitutional or legal method for filling the vacancy.


The specific duties of the director were outlined in Title 21, Chapter 2, Article 2 of the Wyoming state code:[9]

  • Make rules and regulations, consistent with this code, as may be necessary or desirable for the proper and effective administration of the state educational system and the statewide education accountability system pursuant to W.S. 21-2-204. Nothing in this section shall be construed to give the director rulemaking power in any area specifically delegated to the state board or the state superintendent;
  • Consult with and advise the state board, local school boards, local school administrators, teachers and interested citizens, and seek in every way to develop public support for a complete and uniform system of education for the citizens of this state;
  • Maintain adequate files and records of matters pertaining to the business of his office;
  • Enforce the provisions of this code and the administrative rules and regulations provided for in this code, in accordance with procedures provided by law;
  • Assist the state board in the performance of its duties and responsibilities, including providing information to the board upon request;
  • Prepare and maintain a list of accredited schools in Wyoming;
  • Print and distribute to local boards of trustees, local school administrators and other persons and agencies within or without the state the school laws, regulations, forms, necessary reports of the state board, state committee, state superintendent, the director and state department. The director may require the payment of reasonable costs of publication, handling and postage by persons or agencies outside the state requesting publications and shall deposit all payments into the general fund;
  • Promulgate rules for the acceptance and disbursement of federal funds apportioned to the state for school lunch, milk and other commodities distribution programs. For purposes of these programs, the director may enter into agreements, employ personnel, direct disbursement of funds in accordance with federal law to be used by districts to operate the programs along with funds from gifts and the sale of school lunches or other commodities, assist in the training of personnel in the programs and accept gifts in connection with the programs. Districts shall maintain records and report to the director in accordance with rules promulgated under this paragraph, but accounts and records need not be preserved more than five (5) years. The director shall audit and conduct reviews and inspections of accounts, records and operations of programs to ensure effective administration and compliance with applicable law and rules. To the extent funds are available, the director shall conduct studies to determine methods to improve and expand school lunch programs and to promote nutritional education in the schools, including appraising nutritive benefits of school lunch programs. For school lunch program funds, the director shall utilize a revolving account with a balance of at least five thousand dollars ($5,000.00) to cover any operating expenditures incurred by the school lunch division of the department under 7 U.S.C. section 1431, the United States department of agriculture commodity program offered to the state and accepted by the participating schools and institutions. The schools and institutions shall be billed for their share pro rata of transportation and allied charges with the receipts to be used in replenishing the revolving account. If the United States department of agriculture removes all commodities from this program, the revolving account shall be discontinued and the balance shall be transferred to the general fund;
  • Promulgate rules and provide a biennial plan and budget for the maintenance and operation of the Wyoming school for the deaf in Casper;
  • For purposes of the statewide assessment of students and reporting student performance under W.S. 21-2-304(a)(v), have authority to assess and collect student educational assessment data from school districts, community colleges and the University of Wyoming. All data shall be consolidated, combined and analyzed in accordance with W.S. 21-2-204(h) and shall be provided within a reasonable time in accordance with rules and regulations of the state board;
  • Assist the Wyoming professional teaching standards board in the performance of its duties and responsibilities under W.S. 21-2-801 and 21-2-802, including providing information to the board upon request;
  • Include in the agency's budget request:
  • Recommendations to the governor for appropriations from the school foundation program account and for appropriations to the account necessary to fund payments to school districts as required by law; and
  • Recommendations to the governor for appropriations from the foundation program for special programs.
  • In accordance with W.S. 21-2-501 and 21-2-701(a)(ii) and subject to W.S. 21-2-304(a)(iii) and 21-9-101(c), promulgate rules to assure that each child with disabilities receives a free and appropriate education in accordance with his capabilities, including persons who are deaf, blind or have other physical disabilities which prevent them from reading in a normal manner;
  • Serve as the director of the state agency to accept all federal funds for aid to education, except as provided in W.S. 21-2-307 and 21-2-601, and as the agency to administer or supervise the administration of any state plan established or federal funds subject to federal requirements. Each acceptance is restricted in its effect to the specific situation involved. The director may:
  • Enter into an agreement with the proper federal agency to procure for the state the benefits of the federal statute;
  • Establish a state plan, if required by the federal statute, to qualify the state for the benefits of the federal statute;
  • Provide for reports to be made to the federal agency as may be required;
  • Provide for reports to be made to the state department of education from local educational agencies receiving federal funds;
  • Make surveys and studies in cooperation with other agencies to determine the needs of the state with respect to the application of federal funds;
  • Establish standards to which agencies shall conform in receiving federal funds;
  • Give technical advice and assistance to any local educational agency in connection with that agency obtaining federal funds;
  • Take any other action as may be necessary to secure the benefits of the federal statute to the schools of this state. Nothing in this paragraph shall be construed as conferring any authority to the director with respect to the University of Wyoming or the various community colleges of the state.
  • In cooperation with the state board, the Wyoming community college commission, University of Wyoming, public service commission, department of transportation, department of enterprise technology services, public libraries, school district boards of trustees, classroom teachers and other appropriate groups identified by the director, develop and implement a statewide education technology plan which shall address staff training, curriculum integration and network connectivity in and between schools, communities and between the state and the world, and which shall have as its goal the provision of equal access to educational instruction and information. The statewide technology education plan may include telecommunications services provided by the department of enterprise technology services pursuant to W.S. 9-2-2906(g). Not later than January 10 of each year and with the assistance of participating agencies, an annual report on the status of the statewide education technology plan shall be prepared and issued by the director;
  • Establish and maintain a uniform statewide reporting system based upon requirements of the statewide education accountability system established under W.S. 21-2-204 and the statewide student assessment implemented by the state board under W.S. 21-2-304(a)(v);
  • Establish statewide guidelines for adequate special education staffing levels, to be used in assessing special education programs and services provided by school districts;
  • Monitor school district special education identification and service delivery practices, assess the appropriateness of district variations in services provided or the delivery of services and assist districts in developing alternatives to service delivery as necessary;
  • Measure and track district special education programs based upon student performance and develop procedures to monitor student progress over time;
  • Establish criteria and guidelines for the identification of career-vocational education courses by districts, for the computation of full-time equivalent (FTE) students participating in career-vocational education courses and for the determination of full-time equivalent (FTE) career-vocational education teachers, and provide for the annual collection of information necessary to implement and administer W.S. 21-13-309(m)(v)(D);
  • Develop a process and procedures necessary for consideration of district waivers from specified instructional and career-vocational education program requirements specified under W.S. 21-13-309(m)(v)(D), including incentives encouraging teacher certification and program course sequencing compliance, subject to district submission of the following:
  • Verification of the alignment of the proposed course or program with the state content and performance standards for career-vocational education programs;
  • Documentation of the additional costs associated with the proposed course or program including class size and specialized equipment needs; and
  • If applicable, documentation of experiences and education of a noncertified teacher that would otherwise qualify the teacher to instruct the proposed course.
  • Establish necessary procedural and monitoring requirements for implementation of the career-technical education demonstration project grant program authorized under W.S. 21-12-105, including coordination with Wyoming post secondary education institutions and industry in developing program procedures and components;
  • By rule and regulation, provide for the reporting of district career-vocational education expenditures;
  • Effective school year 2012-2013 and each school year thereafter, in consultation and coordination with local school districts, by rule and regulation establish a program of administering a standardized, curriculum based, achievement college entrance examination, computer-adaptive college placement assessment and a job skills assessment test selected by the director to all students in the eleventh and twelfth grades throughout the state in accordance with this paragraph. The examinations and tests selected by the director shall be administered throughout the United States and shall be relied upon by institutions of higher education. The college entrance examination shall at a minimum test in the areas of English, reading, writing, mathematics and science for all students in grade eleven (11). The jobs skills assessment test shall be optional for all students in grade eleven (11) and shall at a minimum test in the areas of applied math, reading for information and locating information. The director shall pay all costs associated with administering the college entrance examination, the computer-adaptive college placement assessment and the jobs skills assessment test and shall schedule a day during which examinations shall be provided. The date for administration of the college entrance examination in grade eleven (11) shall be selected so that following receipt of scores, students may timely register for senior year classes which may be necessary to allow the student to qualify for a state provided scholarship. The computer adaptive college placement assessment shall be optional and all students in grade twelve (12) shall be provided at least one (1) opportunity to take the assessment during the school year. The director may enter into agreements with an administrator of the college entrance examination and the computer-adaptive college placement assessment and an administrator of the jobs skills assessment test and adopt rules as necessary to ensure compliance with any requirements of an administrator, such as a secure environment. Waivers may be granted for the examinations and tests required by this paragraph for students with disabilities in accordance with the provisions of the federal No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 and the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. Alternate assessments and accommodations shall be offered by the director in accordance with rule and regulation;
  • By rule and regulation and in consultation with the state board of education and the Wyoming professional teaching standards board, provide guidance and oversight of distance education by:
  • Establishing, approving, facilitating and monitoring a state network of distance education courses that meet state standards for course content and delivery by Wyoming certified teachers;
  • Providing training and technical assistance to school districts for the delivery of distance education;
  • Monitoring the design, content, delivery and the accreditation of distance education programs provided by school districts under W.S. 21-13-330;
  • Establishing criteria and necessary components of individual student distance learning plans required by W.S. 21-13-330;
  • Implementing a comprehensive reporting process as necessary for federal and state funding requirements and establishing necessary data collection instruments and systems to monitor and improve distance education programs statewide.
  • With the department of enterprise technology services, establish criteria for the collection, storage, management and reporting of department of education data related to teacher certification and the administration of the school finance system.
  • The director shall designate an employee of the department of education to serve as liaison to the state board and the state superintendent through which requests for staff assistance shall be directed. The state department of education shall provide information or data requested by the state board that is necessary to perform duties under W.S. 21-2-304.
  • In addition to subsection (a) of this section, the director may take appropriate administrative action with the state board as necessary, including but not limited to the changing of accreditation status, against any school district or state institution failing to comply with any applicable law or with the uniform educational program standards specified under W.S. 21-9-101 and 21-9-102 and the student content and performance standards prescribed by the state board.
  • Any school district aggrieved by an act of the director may seek review in accordance with the Wyoming Administrative Procedure Act.
  • In addition to paragraph (a)(i) of this section, the director shall promulgate rules and regulations governing the administration of the Wyoming education resource block grant model adopted by the Wyoming legislature as defined under W.S. 21-13-309, and governing the operation of the model in determining school district foundation program payments in accordance with chapter 13, article 3 of this title and other applicable law. The block grant model, as defined under W.S. 21-13-101(a)(xiv) and as maintained under this subsection, shall be made available for public inspection by the director in electronic format. Copies of the block grant model spreadsheets as administered under department rule and regulation shall be provided to school districts by the director for district use in district budgeting and in complying with mandatory financial reporting requirements imposed under W.S. 21-13-307(b) and by other provisions of law. To maintain the integrity of the block grant model, copies of the model and model spreadsheets made available under this subsection for public inspection and school district use shall be by protected version only, prohibiting the editing of model components, model data and model formulas. Following adoption of any recalibration of or modification to the block grant model by the Wyoming legislature, and prior to computing the foundation program amount for each school district under W.S. 21-13-309(p) and determining the amount to be distributed to a district under W.S. 21-13-311 or recaptured from a district subject to W.S. 21-13-102(b), the director shall certify to the legislature that the block grant model as enacted by the legislature is properly incorporated into the administration of the model for the appropriate school year of model application and is made available for public inspection. Technical corrections to model spreadsheets necessary for model administration between any session of the legislature shall be implemented by the director, shall be in accordance with procedures specified by rule and regulation filed with the secretary of state, shall be reported to the legislature together with the associated fiscal and technical impact of the correction, and shall be incorporated into the electronic version of the model available for public inspection. As used in this subsection, "technical corrections to model spreadsheets" means corrections necessary to ensure model operation and current school year district payments are in accordance with law and the model is properly computing school foundation program payments to school districts as required by law. Notwithstanding W.S. 16-3-114(c), no judicial review of rules promulgated and adopted under this subsection shall hold unlawful or set aside action of the director in promulgating or adopting rules unless the rules are by clear and convincing evidence, shown to exceed statutory authority.


Note: Ballotpedia's state executive officials project researches state official websites for information that describes the divisions (if any exist) of a state executive office. That information for the Wyoming Director of the Department of Education has not yet been added. After extensive research we were unable to identify any relevant information on state official websites. If you have any additional information about this office for inclusion on this section and/or page, please email us.

State budget

See also: Wyoming state budget and finances

The budget for the Department of Education in Fiscal Year 2013-2014 was $262,443,291.[10]


The Wyoming Director of the Department of Education was paid $92,000 in 2013.[11]

Historical officeholders

Note: Ballotpedia's state executive officials project researches state official websites for chronological lists of historical officeholders. That information for the Wyoming Director of the Department of Education has not yet been added because the information was unavailable on the relevant state official websites, or we are currently in the process of formatting the list for this office. If you have any additional information about this office for inclusion on this section and/or page, please email us.

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Contact information


Wyoming Department of Education
2300 Capitol Avenue
Hathaway Building, 2nd floor
Cheyenne, WY 82002-0050

Phone: 307-777-7690
Fax: 307-777-6234

See also

External links