School District 25 Policy
Rules Of Practice Governing
Contests Before The Board
Adopted: February 23, 1999
- General Provisions:
- Section 1. Authority . These rules are adopted as authorized by the
Wyoming Administrative Procedures Act, W.S. 16-3-101 through 16-3-115, and
under the provisions of W.S. 21-3-110 as amended.
- Section 2. Effective Upon Compliance. These rules shall be effective
upon compliance with all pre-requisites set forth in the Wyoming Administrative
Procedures Act, § 16-3-102 to 163-106 or any statute amending, recodifying
or superseding the same.
- Section 3. Previous Rules Superseded. From and after the effective
date of these rules, any previously filed rules of practice of Fremont County
School District No. 25 relating to Contested Hearings, shall be superseded
and shall be of no further force or effect.
- Section 4. Promulgation Amendment or Repeal of Rules. Any amendments
to these rules shall become effective as provided by W.S. 16-3-101 through
- Definitions And Applicability:
- Hearings And Contested Cases:
- Section 1. Definitions. As used in these rules:
- "Board" means the Board of Trustees of Fremont County School District
- "Chairman" means the chairman of the Board.
- "Hearing" includes all contested cases.
- "Party" means each person or agency named or admitted as a party, or
properly seeking and entitled as of right to be admitted as a party.
- "Person" means any individual, partnership, corporation, association,
municipality, governmental subdivision or public or private organization
of any character other than an agency.
- "Superintendent" means the chief administrative officer of the school
- "Clerk" means the Clerk of the Board.
- "Teacher" means any person employed under contract by the Board as a
certified professional employee.
- "Pupil" or "student" means any person duly enrolled for instruction
in the public elementary or secondary schools of this district.
- "Independent hearing officer" means that person selected or appointed
as provided for in W.S. 21-7-110 (c).
- Section 2. Applicability of Rules.
- These rules shall apply to all hearings required by law to be held with
respect to termination, dismissal and suspension of teachers under the
Wyoming Teacher's Employment Law as amended, and, any applicable federal
and state court decisions, and to all formal hearings required by law
to be held with respect to the suspension or expulsion of any student
from the public schools and to any other matters wherein a contested case,
as defined by law, is presented or any other matter wherein a hearing
is required by law.
- Informal or investigative hearings may be held by the Board without
compliance with these rules.
- Hearing not in compliance with these rules may be held by the Board
upon express written agreement by all parties.
- All petitions filed with the Board in the form of appeals from decisions
of District employees, administrators, or teachers shall be handled under
these rules to the extent they are applicable unless they are otherwise
provided for under any Employee - District negotiated contract, or a grievance
procedure adopted by the Board.
- Hearings Before The Board:
- Section 1. Generally. Any person whose legally-recognized rights
have been or will be affected by any decision, order, ruling, or other action
taken by the Board or to be taken by the Board has a right to a hearing before
the Board unless such hearing is required by law to be before an independent
- Section 2. Petition. Any person desiring to come before the Board
for a hearing must file with the Board, in its office at Fremont County School
District No. 25, Riverton, Wyoming, a petition setting forth:
- A concise statement of the facts on which the petitioner relies.
- A statement in ordinary language, setting forth the action or decision
desired by the petitioner.
- The name, address and telephone number of the petitioner and of the
attorney for the petitioner, if any.
- The signature of the petitioner and attorney for the petitioner, if
- The legal authority, if any, or known at the time of the filing of the
petition, upon which the petitioner relies.
- Section 3. Board As Petitioner. In any matter in which the School
District is required to hold a hearing either before the Board or before an
independent hearing officer in which it has the burden of proof; the School
District shall be deemed the petitioner for purposes of these rules. Any notices
or writings required by law for said hearing shall be deemed to be the petition
for the School District. Any objection by the other party to the petition
of the School District shall be served in writing at least ten (10) working
days before any scheduled hearing.
- Section 4. Notice of Hearing. For any hearing which is to be held
before the Board, the Clerk shall cause written notice of any hearing held
under these rules to be served upon each party as much time in advance of
the date set for hearing as is reasonably practicable. Such notice shall include
a statement of:
- The time, place and nature of the hearing.
- The legal authority and jurisdiction under which the hearing is to be
- The particular sections of the statutes, rules, or court decisions involved.
- A short and plain statement of the matters asserted. If the Clerk is
unable to state the matters in detail at the time the notice is served,
the initial notice may be limited to a statement of the issues involved,
and thereafter upon application a more definite and detailed statement
shall be furnished.
For hearings required by law to be held before an independent hearing officer,
the independent hearing officer shall be responsible for notifying the teacher
and superintendent of the date, time and location of the hearing. Hearings
before an independent hearing officer shall be held within forty-five (45)
days after notice of termination, suspension or dismissal.
- Section 5. Hearing Examiner.
- Whenever it shall appear, from statements of any party or other sources,
including applicable Federal or State case law, that a dispute exists
wherein a hearing is authorized or required to be held before the Board,
the Board, at its option, may delay further proceedings until all
factual disputes are heard and recommendations made by a hearing examiner
as provided in this section.
- The hearing examiner shall be the presiding officer at the hearing and
shall conduct all proceedings in an impartial manner.
- The hearing examiner shall be a qualified member of the bar of Wyoming.
- The hearing examiner shall make recommended findings of fact and conclusions
of law to the Board in writing.
- The hearing examiner shall be hired by the Board and shall be entitled
to a reasonable fee for his services and reimbursement for reasonable
expenses incurred in connection therewith, but shall not be considered
an employee of the District, but rather, an independent contractor.
- The hearing examiner shall accord the partied the same hearing procedural
rights as are available to them in a hearing before the Board as herein
- The impartial hearing examiner shall not be an employee of the Board
of a person with a personal or professional interest in the case at hearing,
nor be biased or prejudiced against any party to the hearing.
- Section 6. Adoption of Findings of Fact and Conclusions.
- The recommended Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law certified by
the hearing examiner under Section 5.d of this Article III of these rules
or rendered by the independent hearing officer pursuant to W.S. §21-7-110
shall be mailed to all parties and members of the Board.
- Any party objecting to the recommended Findings of Fact and Conclusions
of Law shall present any objections at the next meeting of the Board occurring
at least forty-eight (48) hours after mailing of the recommended Findings
of Fact and Conclusions of Law to all parties or within fourteen (14)
days after mailing, whichever occurs first.
- The recommended Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law shall be adopted
by the Board unless a majority of the members of the Board object to the
recommended Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law. No member of the
Board may object to the recommendations unless he shall have been present
at the hearing or has read the transcript of the proceedings or heard
or examined the official record of the hearing. If the Board terminates,
suspends or dismisses a teacher's employment over a recommendation by
the independent hearing officer of retention, the written order of the
Board shall include a conclusion together with reasons supported by the
record. The decision of the Board to either adopt or reject the recommended
Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law shall be issued in writing within
twenty (20) days of receipt of the recommended Findings of Fact and Conclusions
- Section 7. Duties of Presiding Officer. The presiding officer at
any hearing before the Board shall be the Chairman of the Board, or any member
of the Board authorized to act in the absence of the Chairman, or the hearing
examiner as provided in Section 5.b of this Article III of these rules, or
the independent hearing officer as provided in W.S. §21-7-110. The presiding
officer shall have authority and power to:
- Administer oaths and affirmations;
- Issue subpoenas;
- Rule upon offers of proof and receive relevant evidence;
- Take or cause depositions to be taken in accordance with the provisions
of the Wyoming Administrative Procedures Act and rules of the Board;
- Regulate the course of the hearing;
- Hold conferences for the settlement or simplification of the issues;
- Dispose of procedural requests or similar matters;
- Cause Find of Fact and Conclusions of Law to be finalized and filed
with the Clerk and delivered to all parties;
- May recess the hearing or grant continuances for good cause;
- May require written briefs from any party clarifying its legal or factual
- May declare that any matter is being taken under advisement and that
a decision will be announced at a later time, not to exceed twenty (20)
days for hearings before the independent hearing officer or sixty (60)
days for all other hearings;
- Punish contempt by permanent removal from the hearing location by any
person so offending;
- See that a recording of the hearing is made by either an electronic
recording device or certified shorthand or machine reporter or other person
authorized to administer oaths;
- Take any other action authorized by law, consistent with these rules,
or required to fulfill any of his duties.
- Section 8. Order of Procedure at Hearing. As nearly as may be, hearing
shall be conducted in accordance with the following order of procedure:
- The petitioner may briefly state his case and the evidence by which
he expects to sustain it.
- The adverse party may then briefly state his defense and the evidence
he expects to offer in support of it.
- The petitioner shall first produce his evidence, the adverse party will
then produce his evidence.
- The parties will then be confined to rebutting evidence unless the presiding
officer permits them to offer evidence in their original case.
- The presiding officer may, in his discretion, allow evidence to be offered
out of the order as herein prescribed.
- Closing statements will be made in the following sequence:
- Adverse Party
- Petitioner in Rebuttal
- Section 9. Witnesses at Hearings to be Sworn. All persons testifying
at any hearing shall stand and be administered the following oath by the presiding
officer: "Do you swear (or affirm) to tell the truth, the whole truth and
nothing but the truth in the matter now before the Board, so help you God?",
unless the hearing officer waives said oath on a showing that the person understands
the meaning of telling the truth and that he/ she may be charged and convicted
of the crime of falsifying his/ her testimony.
- Section 10. Disposition of Case by Stipulation. Any case may be finally
disposed of by stipulation, agreed settlement, consent order or default of
the parties, approved by the Board. An appropriate order accordingly shall
be entered in the case record.
- Section 11. Applicable Rules of Civil Procedure to Annually. The
rules of practice and procedure contained in the Rules of Civil Procedure
of the State of Wyoming, insofar as the same may be applicable, and not inconsistent
with the laws of the State of Wyoming, or these rules shall apply at all hearings
under these rules. Service of the petition and notice of hearing may be by
certified or registered mail to the last known address of the teacher or student
involved or by personal service by any adult, provided that service upon a
teacher or student by an employee of the school district shall be witnessed
unless an acknowledgement of service is signed by the teacher or student.
All other notices and service of papers shall be made in accordance with Rule
- Section 12. Attorneys. The filing of a petition or other similar
representation by an attorney constitutes his appearance for the party for
whom the representation is made. The Board, hearing examiner, or independent
hearing officer, must be notified in writing of any withdrawal from the case.
Any person appearing at a hearing in a representative capacity, shall be precluded
from examining or cross-examining any witness, unless such person shall be
an attorney licensed to practice in the State of Wyoming, or a non-resident
attorney, associated with a Wyoming attorney. These rules shall not be construed
to prohibit any person from representing himself in any hearing under these
- Section 13. School Attorney Present. In all matters before the Board,
or under these rules, Chairman shall request the school attorney to be present,
to assist and advise the Board and to represent the District. If there is
a conflict in the Board attorney acting as advisor for the Board, the Board
shall authorize the employment of Special Counsel to act either as attorney
for the Board or attorney for the District.
- Section 14. Taking of Testimony - Reporter. Where oral testimony
of witnesses is taken in a hearing under these rules, the testimony shall
be reported either by an electronic recording device or by a certified shorthand
machine reporter or other person authorized to administer oaths whose compensation
for taking such testimony shall be at the expense of the District. A transcription
of the proceedings or any part thereof shall be at the cost and expense of
any party requesting the same, except when a decision pertaining to the termination,
suspension or dismissal of a teacher is appealed to State District Court,
in which event the cost of transcribing the record shall be borne equally
by the teacher and the District.
- Section 15. Decision and Order. The Board shall make a written decision
and order in all cases, which order and decision shall be filed by the Clerk
in the file of the matter. The vote of the Board shall be shown in its decision.
When the decision involves a teacher, a copy shall be provided to the teacher
and a copy placed in the school records pertaining to the teacher.
- Section 16. Appeals. Any decision of the Board is subject to appeal
to the District Court and the Supreme Court of Wyoming as provided by law.
- Section 17. Application of Wyoming Administrative Procedure Act.
Whether or not herein set forth, the provisions of the Wyoming Administrative
Procedure Act, § 16-3-101 to 163-115, as amended and the Wyoming Education
Code (21-3-101 et. seq.), shall govern all procedures before this Board except
in all statutory proceedings before this Board should a conflict arise between
the statutes and these rules, the statues shall govern and control.
- Section 18. Severability. If any provision of these rules of practice
or the application thereof to any matter is held invalid, the invalidity shall
not affect the other provisions or applications of these rules which can be
given effect without the invalid provision or application, and for this purpose
the provisions of these rules are severable.
- Rules Governing Determination Of Eligibility for Free And Reduced Price
- Section 1. Applicability of Rules. The rules contained in this Article
shall apply to the determination of eligibility of pupils for free and reduced-price
- Section 2. Definitions. As used in this Article, the following additional
- "Family" shall mean a group of related or non-related individuals who
are not residents of an institution or boarding house, but who are living
as one economic unit.
- "School Food Authority" means the person selected and hired by the Board
to oversee and administer the school lunch program of the District, and
determine eligibility requirements in the school lunch program for recipients
of free and reduced price lunches.
- Section 3. Standards. In determining standards of eligibility for
free and reduced-price lunches, the school food authorities shall consider
in adopting or amending specific guidelines:
- The level of family income, including welfare grants; and
- The number of individuals in the family; and
- The number of children in the family attending schools or service institutions.
- Section 4. Eligibility. Any pupil who is a member of a family which
has an annual income not above the applicable family size income level set
forth in the income poverty guidelines prescribed by the Secretary of Agriculture
of the United States, shall receive free or reduced-price lunches.
- Section 5. Non-Eligible Children. Any family which does not meet
the eligibility criteria established by the school food authority may apply
to the school food authority for free or reduced-price lunches for its pupils
stating the reasons why, even though the family does not meet the eligibility
criteria as established by these rules and the guidelines prescribed by the
Secretary of Agriculture, such family believes that its pupils are unable
to pay the full price of the lunch. If the school food authority determines,
on the basis of such an application, that the pupils of such family cannot
afford to pay the full price of a lunch, a free or reduced-price lunch may
be made available to such children.
- Section 6. Priority. The school food authority shall give first priority
to providing free lunches to the neediest children in the schools within the
- Section 7. Publicity. The school food authority shall publicly announce
the standards and criteria for determining the eligibility for free and reduced-price
lunches by taking the following actions:
- Sending a letter or notice at or about the beginning of each school
year to the parents of children in attendance, stating the eligibility
standards and criteria for determining eligibility, how to apply for free
and reduced-price lunches, and how a family may appeal the decision of
the school authority; and
- Sending a public release containing the same information as is required
by subsection (a) of this section to the news media of general circulation
within the district; and
- Making available through the office of the superintendent, copies of
the public release, which copies shall be available to all interested
parents and pupils.
- Section 8. Applications. The school food authority shall supply forms
upon which families may apply for free or reduced-price lunches. Such forms
shall require only information as is needed to determine eligibility.
- Section 9. Transfers. Transfers between or among schools within the
District shall not affect eligibility for free or reduced-price lunches, nor
require further application.
- Section 10. Change in Status. In the event there is a change in the
income or other eligibility criteria by which the pupils of any family were
found to be eligible for free or reduced price lunches, the family of which
such pupils are members, must notify the school food authority immediately
and the school food authority shall then redetermine the eligibility of the
pupils for free or reduced-price lunches and notify the family of such determination.
- Section 11. Appeals. Any family, the pupils of which have been refused
free or reduced price lunches, may, upon the forms available in the office
of the superintendent, make application for a hearing before the Board by
filing a completed application form with the clerk.
- Section 12. Time of Setting and Hearing.
- Within ten (10) days after receipt of the application for hearing, the
clerk shall set a time and place for hearing upon the application.
- The time set for hearing shall be not less than ten (10) nor more than
thirty (30) days after the date upon which the clerk shall set the time
and place of hearing.
- Section 13. Exceptions to Rules of Practice Governing Hearings. The
rules of practice governing hearings as contained in Article III of these
rules, shall be applicable to hearings provided under the provisions of this
Article IV, except as follows:
- Service of any notice required to be made herein may be made upon any
member of the family who is of legal age.
- The proceedings need not be reported verbatim stenographically or by
any other means except upon the request of either party, in which event,
the party making such request shall bear the expense of the verbatim reporting.
In the event the proceedings are not reported verbatim, accurate minutes
of the hearing shall be kept by a person appointed by the Board and such
minutes shall be placed, with all exhibits offered into evidence, in the