Worland News 8-29-18

Written by on August 29, 2018

An audio version of this news available here.

During Monday’s Washakie County School District #1 Board meeting, Curriculum Director Jody Rakness briefed the board on the recent release of ACT performance results.
Worland High School students performed at or slightly above statewide levels on the test. Rakness did state to the board that teachers and administrators had not had a chance yet to dig into the numbers and assess what areas may need more focus as the district works to reach its goals on testing performance.
Rakness went on to highlight a couple of pieces she felt the board, administrators and teachers should be proud of. The district installed a piece called “Closing the Gap.” It is designed to bring I-D-E-A students, or Individuals with Disabilities Education Act students, and students on free and reduced lunch closer to the General Education standard. I-D-E-A students were only point 7 points behind the gen. ed. standard, and students on free and reduced lunch were only 1 point behind, showing the district is “closing the gap” for those students.
The initial results did come with areas that need improvement for WCSD #1. Females significantly outperfomed males on the test and an initial look at writing shows areas where improved results are required. A positive on the writing front was that 35 percent of students ranked in the top 25 percent of writers overall.
Preparation for the test has also changed, Wyoming has adopted the WYTOPP test and no longer use the Aspire, ACT Asprire or Explore tests as prepatory tests.

The Wyoming Game and Fish Department confirmed a bull elk harvested by a hunter tested positive for chronic wasting disease (CWD) in Elk Hunt Area 66. The elk was killed northeast of Meeteetse and this is the first time CWD has been found in this elk hunt area.
To ensure that hunters are informed, Game and Fish has the practice of announcing when CWD is found in a new hunt area. Additionally, Game and Fish follows the human health recommendation of the Centers for Disease Control, which state that hunters should strongly consider having their elk, deer and moose tested if harvested in an area where CWD is known to occur, and not consume any animal that is obviously ill or tests positive for CWD.
Elk Hunt Area 66 is quite close to Elk Hunt Area 48 where CWD was first documented last year. A map of CWD endemic areas is available on the Game and Fish website.

Scientists report finding several different fossils at a site that now lies beneath a Wyoming reservoir.
They include bones of a horse, bison, camel and a creature similar to a deer called an artiodactyl.
The Powel Tribune reports the fossils date roughly to the Pleistocene, the era of ice ages between 2.5 million and 12,000 years ago.
Wyoming State Archaeologist Greg Pierce says researchers rushed to the shore of Buffalo Bill Reservoir after the discovery of mammoth bones in April. They wanted to uncover all they could before the reservoir rose with spring runoff and covered the site.
Scientists hope testing can better determine the fossils’ age. They covered the site with rock before water rose but may return after water levels drop again.

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