Wyoming Digital Learning Plan August 2020 Newsletter

Update from the Wyoming Department of Education  |  view online |  website



Welcome to the Digital Learning Plan (DLP) monthly newsletter

Welcome to the Digital Learning Plan (DLP) monthly newsletter. This newsletter explores the Wyoming Department of Education’s (WDE) DLP, its goals, and suggested strategies to ensure equitable access to opportunities and success in postsecondary, career, and civic life. 


Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment

This month’s initiatives focused around the DLP Future Ready Framework gear Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment are highlighted. The goals of this gear are:

Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment Gear
  • Provide a common understanding of what students should know, understand, and be able to do specific to digital learning and digital citizenship.
  • Technology is used to gather and utilize data to inform educators and students with personalizing instruction.
  • Educators use instructional practices that shift their role to be facilitators of learning.

Accessibility of Educational Materials

With the ability of educators to use, create, and share a variety of digital curricular materials, it is important to ensure that all students receive education materials in a format that is accessible to them. This includes making any materials that will be used in a classroom or digital environment accessible for all learners. 

To assist educators in selecting and designing their instructional materials, the National Center for Accessible Educational Materials (AEM Center) has created a useful structure for considering the needs of learners who may not be able to access educational materials in standard formats. AEM Center has developed step-by-step instructions for each area of the acronym POUR, which stands for Perceivable, Operable, Understandable, and Robust. In following the POUR design instructions and utilizing these standard formats, educational accessibility is fostered.

The AEM Center has also created two handouts that focus on a subset of the best practices addressed in this section. The handouts use the mnemonic SLIDE (for Styles, Links, Images, Design and Empathy) to make the best practices easier to remember.  


To ensure that learners can see and hear your content, follow the Perceivable design steps to learn how to:

  • Add alternative text to images and other visuals.
  • Close caption videos or provide transcripts.
  • Provide sufficient color contrast between text and its background.
  • Make sure content does not rely on color alone.
Decorative image to display the four bullets listed above for Perceivable


To ensure that learners can interact with your content with a variety of tools, follow the Operable design steps to learn how to:

  • Provide a clear structure with properly marked up headings.
  • Create descriptive links that make sense out of context.
  • Provide sufficient time for interaction and response.
  • Avoid content that can trigger seizures.
Decorative image to display the four bullets listed above for Operable


To ensure that learners can understand your content and enjoy a predictable experience, follow the Understandable design steps to learn how to:

  • Clarify expectations through clear directions and models.
  • Follow conventions to ensure a predictable and consistent experience.
  • Use plain language.
  • Indicate the language of your content.
Decorative image to display the four bullets listed above for Understandable


To ensure that your content works well with current and future technologies, follow the Robust design steps to learn how to:

  • Add metadata to make content easier to find and use.
  • Perform an accessibility check.
  • Perform basic assistive technology testing.
Decorative image to display the four bullets listed above for Robust

Professional Development Opportunities

  • ISTE Certification Training - WDE sponsored International Society for Technology in Education Certification for Educators training for 100 Wyoming teachers.
  • Open Educational Resources - Free, open enrollment online course about open education resources; class is available to all Wyoming educators. Check out Open Range Wyoming for open education resources created and vetted by a professional group of Wyoming teachers. In partnership with UWYO and aligned with OER, we would like to highlight the outstanding Learning Actively Mentoring Program (LAMP). LAMP Roadshow.
  • Quality Matters - WDE-sponsored workshops or virtual courses on developing and delivering quality online content available to all Wyoming educators at no cost.
  • Quality Matters Teaching Online Certificate - Series of seven workshops focused on effective online teaching practices sponsored by the WDE available to all Wyoming educators at no cost.
  • Wyoming Digital Learning Guidelines Course - Free, open enrollment online course about using education technology in the classroom available to all Wyoming educators at no cost.
  • Wyoming Innovations in Learning Annual Conference - Join us virtually November 5-6, 2020.
  • Wyoming WebEd Radio - Weekly live professional development webcast designed to assist teachers with efforts in personalized learning starting at 3:30 p.m. every Thursday beginning September 17, 2020. Subscribe to the WDE YouTube channel to view Season 1.

Stay Tuned

Next month’s Digital Learning Plan Newsletter will focus on state initiatives focus on Data and Privacy featuring a new professional development opportunity for WyEd-Fi.

For more information on the Wyoming Digital Learning Plan or the Future Ready Framework, contact Robin Grandpre at 307-777-5315 or robin.grandpre1@wyo.gov