The Idaho Education Association was among the education stakeholder groups who made presentations to the Senate Education Committee on Monday, with IEA President Penni Cyr doing the honors. Cyr introduced members of the IEA lobby team who will be working with legislators during the 2017 session, as well as members of the IEA’s Government Relations Committee who were in Boise to visit with their respective legislators and observe the proceedings. The Government Relations Committee consists of Amy Biggs, Joel Williams, Russell Gee, Peggy Hoy, Bob Solomon, Allie Bigham, Shauna Wheelwright, Carla Corbridge, Layne McInelly, Lori Steiniker, Jeni Fereday and Carla Corbridge.
In her remarks, Cyr highlighted some of the issues of most importance for the IEA and its members, including…
- Commitment to full-funding of year three of the Career Ladder salary allocation plan
- Finding a teacher evaluation process that is fair, efficient and manageable
- Increasing the state’s investment in discretionary funding, and ensuring the districts have control and flexibility over those funds
- Ensuring that taxpayer dollars are utilized to support public education, not syphoned off for private/charter schools
Cyr also shared with the committee the importance of professional development/support, and highlighted the IEA’s commitment to those efforts. The IEA has provided more than 8,000 hours of professional development to some 750 teachers in the last calendar year alone.
Please visit our website for a more in-depth preview of the 2017 legislative session.
House Education Committee Hears from Charter School Group
The House Education Committee heard a presentation from Bluum, an organization bankrolled by the Albertson Family Foundation. Bluum runs several charter, religious and innovative schools around the state. Spokesperson Terry Ryan and other representatives touted the successes of their schools, while acknowledging that they are coming up short in serving at-risk populations. The presentation was heavy on concepts such as blended curricula, passion-based learning and critical thinking, but failed to mention that those concepts are also being utilized extensively and with great success in traditional public schools.
Several Legislators Ask to be Removed from Committees
In protest of sanctions placed on Rep. Heather Scott (R-Blanchard), five Republican lawmakers asked to be removed from their respective committee assignments. House Speaker Scott Bedke (R-Oakley) declined to act on the requests during a majority caucus meeting. Betsy Russell has more in the Spokesman-Review.