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January 19, 2012     Lovell Chronicle
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January 19, 2012
 

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6 I The Lovell Chronicle I January 19, 2012 PATTI CARPENTER Deb Ward got her blood pressure checked by Cheri Bischoff a CNA from North Big Horn Hospital, at the North Big Horn Senior Citizens Center on Tuesday. The center offers free blood pressure checks the first Tuesday of every month. Authorized Travel Program reminder Wyoming drivers are being remind- ed about Wyoming Department of Trans- portation's Authorized Travel Program, which permits motorists to drive on sections of dosed roads when authorities judge it is safe to do so. The program is structured in accor- dance with Wyoming law 24-1-109, which in certain circumstances allows for excep- tions to road closures, most commonly to accommodate drivers traveling to and from their residence or place of employment. "Motorists should be aware that the WYDOT Authorized Travel Program does not give them blanket authorization to drive on a closed road," said Cody Beers, WYDOT public relations specialist in Ri- verton. In 2010-11, 848 Wyoming drivers ap- plied for permission to travel beyond clo- sure points on certain Wyoming highways. Of those, 15 drivers applied for the privilege in Northwest Wyoming. WYDOT authorization will not be pro- vided for every road closure; when it is, it will be granted in one of the following three ways: Through email or text messages, when the driver applies and is approved to receive email/text message alerts of WYDOT Authorized Travel events and has received permission to travel for the current closure event. For more information and to apply for email/text alerts, go to https://wat. wyoroad.info/wat/alerts.html. Through Pa- trol dispatch, when the driver contacts Wy- oming Highway Patrol dispatch for permis- sion to travel on the roadway. Permission must be obtained prior to travel and is valid only for the current closure event. Through in-person method, when the driver is given permission to proceed by a state trooper or WYDOT employee posted at the road closure location. Because these locations are unat- tended most of the time, this method is not reliable because there may not be WYDOT personnel present to authorize travel. Wyoming road closures generally fall into two categories: Closed to all traffic: When a roadway is "closed to all traffic," it means that condi- tions are such that no traffic can be allowed past the road closure location for any rea- son. This is the most common type of closure and is oten the result of severe weather. Anyone traveling past a road closure loca- tion will be in violation of the law and sub- ject to legal penalties. Closed with authorized travel: When a roadway is "closed with WYDOT Authorized Travel," it means that a portion of the closed roadway remains passable, and travel, with specific authorization from WYDOT, is be- ing allowed. For information about this news re- lease, contact WYDOT public relations spe- cialist Cody Beers at (307) 431-1803. DOLLAR STORE continued from page 1 four days to put the build- "We should be done ing up," Murdock said. with the building in early "They throw them up in May, and by late May or less than a week." the first of June the store Parking lotandcurbing should be open for busi- work will wait for warmer ness," Murdock said, weather to arrive, he said. Wyoming schools ranked C; local superintendents disagree BY PATTI CARPENTER Wyomins schools received a low rating of C-plus last week in a re- port released by Education Week, a nationally rec- ognized publica- tion. The grade was based on in- formation gathered through surveys that measured statewide policies, but did not take into account individual district pro- grams. Big Horn County School Dis- trict No. 2 Supt. Dan Coe disagrees with the rating because of the way the information was gath- ered in the report. "In Wyoming many decisions such as curriculum, textbooks, teacher professional development, teacher evaluation tools, etc., are decided at a local school district level," said Coe. "National studies do not take this into account and look at what is done at a state level, and if they do not see that component in the scor- ing formula at a state level they score that state low. For example, in this study they score states on teacher mentor programs. In Wyoming, that is done on a local level but not on state level, therefore the study scores Wyoming low in this area sinc there is not a teacher mentor program run by the state. Big Horn No. 2 has a teacher- mentoring program, but that is not scored in this national study. Wyoming school dis- tricts are doing much better than a C-plus in K-12 education, but it is not reflected in these studies." Supt. Shon Hocker of Big Horn County School District No. 1 agreed with Coe that any study that does not take into account the programs in place at the local levels is not an accurate reflection of how schools operate in the state of Wyoming, where policies are not necessarily "standardized" and where individual districts are allowed to be somewhat "autonomous" in terms of determining certain policies. "I personally don't give credence to any report that does not take local information into account, which ap- pears that this study does not," said Hocker. "Our kids score high on national tests like the nation- wide NAEP, which shows the kind of education they are getting." The National As- sessment of Edu- cational Prog- ress (NAEP) is the largest nationally rep- resentative and continuing assess- ment of what America's students know and can do in various subject areas. Since NAEP assessments are administered uniformly using the same sets of test booklets across the nation, NAEP results are considered a "yard stick" for measur- ing and comparing students on a national level. According to the Education Week re- port, known as "Quality Counts" Wyoming ranked 26th against other states with scores of B-minus in the "chance for suc- cess" category, D-plus in "K-12 achieve- ment," C-plus in "standards, assessments and accountability," a C in "transitions and alignment," a C in "teaching profession" and an A-minus in "school finance." The group gave an overall grade of C to U.S. schools based on the average of a 50-state survey and makes the claim that "the study is the most comprehensive on- going assessment of the state of American education." It ranked Maryland schools at the top of the heap with schools in New York and Massachusetts not far behind. New Mexi- co and Nevada received the lowest scores, with grades of D-plus and D respectively. With an overall score of 76.3, the Wyoming score was in keeping with the national av- erage. The majority of states received a score of C-plus or lower in the study. GOVERNOR and not maintain them," he said. In answering other questions, the governor said: *He supports only one four-year university and wants the community col- leges and UW working in partnership. He said the problem with the Bureau of Land continued from page 1 Management Resource Management Plan for the Big Horn Basin was that it failed to recognize areas for enhanced oil recovery but as a result of the governor's office intervening, the BLM has reconsidered and "we have moved in the right di- rection." The BLM is at fault for not recognizing the econom- ic impact of enhanced oil recovery, but the state is at fault, too, for not having an energy policy that states enhanced oil recovery is im- portant, Mead said. An energy policy, he said, would be good for the environment and good for energy development by al- lowing the state to be pro- active in development. Every Every Thursday night saturday night with Stuffing You asked for specials, we heard/ Now starting our evening specials! .... iii!ii: .3sso00 W00sj,00 9 E. Main", Lovell, WY This is one job only we can handle. A downed power line can energize trees, fences, even the ground around it so whatever you do, never approach a downed line. Stay away, keep others away and call us at 888-221-7070 or dial 91 I. There are thousands of volts flowing through these lines, so please remember to be safe and keep your distance. Visit rockymountainpower.net/safety for more information.  ROCKY MOUNTAIN POWER Let's turn the answers on.