Diana Clapp, Superintendent, Fremont County School District #6, Pavillion, Wyo. and Craig Dougherty, Superintendent, Sheridan County School District #2, Sheridan, Wyo.
Wyoming: Leaders Matter
Nominated By: Kevin Mitchell, Executive Director, Wyoming Association of School Administrators
Diana Clapp, Superintendent, Fremont County School District #6, Pavillion, Wyoming
Diana Clapp (https://www.fremont6.org/220555_2) is always trying to meet the needs of her students and community members in her school district. Her large district in central Wyoming has a high poverty rate and the students have many unmet needs.
She converted a school bus into a traveling preschool. The preschool bus travels to the students in rural Fremont 6. The preschool bus also offers screenings and some medical services through a registered nurse. This is an amazing effort to meet the needs of pre-K students of the school district.
Clapp lead the district through a terrible tragedy, with great empathy and leadership. A student was killed at a bus stop and she, along with students, turned the tragedy into a statewide requirement to install cameras and more safety equipment on all school buses in Wyoming. She turned something negative into a teaching moment by guiding local students through the legislative process as they developed the school bus safety bill and successfully lobbied the legislature to vote the proposed bill into a much needed law for Wyoming students.
Through the collaboration of local agencies, the district opened a free medical and mental health clinic for students. The families of the district do not have easy access to medical or mental health services.
Clapp has been a long-time advocate for school districts by participating in statewide task forces, advisory committees, etc. She not only is frequently communicating with local legislators about the needs of her students and all students in the state, the local legislators contact her for her opinions and information.
Clapp’s leadership matters to her local students and our students statewide by her uncanny ability to recognize the needs of her students and community and then to persistently lead others to the desired outcomes.
Exemplars of Leadership:
- Demonstrated leadership in high poverty community.
- Led in innovation preschool outreach program.
- Responded productively to tragedy in district resulting in statewide leadership in student safety.
Craig Dougherty, Superintendent, Sheridan County School District #2, Sheridan, Wyoming
Craig Dougherty (https://scsd2.com/administration/superintendent) has lead Sheridan 2 to be the highest ranked academic school district in Wyoming and the region. The school district has multiple National Blue-Ribbon Schools and the schools have been recognized in many ways as being highly effective. Dougherty determined to focus his leadership on Professional Learning Communities (PLC) through Solution Tree. In fact, he just co-authored a book, Inside PLCs with Solution Tree that recognizes the exceptional school district.
Dougherty has developed a PLC Leadership Academy where principals and teacher teams from Sheridan 2 offer professional development activities for other schools in Wyoming. His schools collaborate with principals and teacher teams for a school year to guide them through the PLC process. The teams meet at both schools throughout the school year to collaborate with each other. These academies have been very successful.
The school district has been developing and offering powerful professional development opportunities each summer in Sheridan. The focus on the local conference is PLC’s but is then enhanced by teachers and administrators learning about such items as unpacking standards, collaborative lesson planning and developing common formative assessments.
Dougherty has been a long-time leader for Native American education. His passion for creating learning opportunities for Native American students began early in his teaching career as he taught on a reservation. He has since created academies for Native American students and speaks nation-wide on Native American student learning.
Dougherty’s focus on student learning and collaborating with other educators is a great example of how leadership matters. His educational leadership skills has and will have a positive impact for students, teachers, administrators and communities for years to come.
Exemplars of Leadership:
- Demonstrated instructional leadership including successful implementation of Professional Learning Communities model.
- Unrelenting leadership in promoting achievement among communities with legacy of underperformance through use of learning academies.
- Commitment to standards-based instruction.