BOISE — Magic Valley residents will represented in a review of Idaho’s education policy.
On Wednesday, Gov. Brad Little announced a task force to establish priorities and a five-year plan for state kindergarten-12th grade and higher education.
Idaho State Board of Education President and Cassia County resident Debbie Critchfield was named chair of the task force. House Education Committee Chair Lance Clow, R-Twin Falls, and Kimberly School District Superintendent Luke Schroeder will also be on the committee.
The 26-member “Our Kids, Idaho’s Future” task force consists of legislators, school administrators and business leaders. They will review state education programs and make spending and policy recommendations for the next legislative session. A variety of policies will be considered, including early literacy and dual credit programs.
One focus will be evaluating teacher pay to encourage educators to stay in the state, said Schroeder, who added he accepted the nomination “to have first hand involvement in where we’re headed with education in Idaho.”
Lawmakers set aside $100,000 for the task force in the 2019 legislative session. It will meet once a month beginning June 3 and deliver recommendations to Little by November.
Clow told the Times-News Wednesday he remains focused on looking at the state’s education funding formula, which is likely to be considered in the next legislative session.
The task force is similar to Gov. Butch Otter’s task force in 2013, which also established a five-year plan to influence education policy in the Legislature.