Governor’s Task Force for Improving Education Members Named
Today Governor Otter released the names members of his Task Force for Improving Education. You might remember that the governor called for the creation of this task force shortly after advocates for repeal balked when Otter and State Supt. of Schools Tom Luna expressed interest in bringing back elements of the laws after Props 1, 2 and 3 were repealed at the ballot box in November.
IEA president Penni Cyr will represent educators on the task force, along with IEA members Teresa Jackman of Pocatello, Brian Smith of Sandpoint, and Cindy Wilson of Meridian. Mike Lanza, co-founder of Idaho Parents and Teachers Together, the organization that started the effort to repeal Props 1, 2 and 3, is also on the task force, as is retired IEA member and District 18 Representative Janie Ward-Engelking. House Education Chair Representative Reed DeMordaunt, Senate Education Chair Senator John Goedde, and State Superintendent of Education Tom Luna are also named to the task force, which will first convene this Friday and will work toward creating recommendations for the 2014 legislative session.
Ed Sessions 2.0
Today a capacity crowd of legislators, education experts and advocates packed Boise’s Linen Building for the Albertsons Foundation’s latest Ed Session, “America’s Education Reform Hangover: Where Does Idaho Go From Here?” It featured Dr. Paul Hill and Dr. Marguerite Roza. Among their recommendations: instead of centralizing management and evaluation of schools, centralize outcome goals, allowing schools to be creative in their teaching and evaluation. We’ll share whatever materials from the event as we get them.
Study “Workplace Issues Affecting Public School Teachers” Released
Late this afternoon, the Joint Legislative Oversight Committee released a new study “Workplace Issues Affecting Public School Teachers.”
The report, which was based on conversations with education agencies and stakeholders, and also included survey results from over 2800 educators found:
- Increasing class size is a concern. More than 60% of superintendents and almost 80% of principals identified class sizes as a concern.
- Compensation is a major concern for teachers and for the administrators who hire them. The average teacher salary in Idaho is $43,000, but the report also found that teachers in all sizes of school districts typically don’t top $40,000 a year until they’ve been teaching for at least 11 years.
- There is an undercurrent of despair among Idaho’s teaching force. Teachers noted that they feel the climate in Idaho disparaged and belittled their contributions.
- While there has not been no mass exodus of teachers from Idaho, it is important for policymakers to monitor trends to avoid such an occurrence in the future.
Read the entire report here.