CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — Just over a year into her job as Wyoming's top public education official, Cindy Hill is finding that the learning curve in managing a large government agency can be more challenging than running a grade school.

Hill has seen an exodus of employees from the Department of Education under her watch. Fifty of some 150 employees under the previous superintendent have left.

One former division director contends the department has become a hostile workplace and is in chaos. Some lawmakers have questioned her management of the agency.

Hill says her department is functioning fine and the criticism against her is mostly political. She says some longtime employees were uncomfortable with her changing department focus to more on helping teachers improve classroom instruction.