The career ladder, two years in. Since Idaho adopted its 2015 “career ladder” law, the state’s average teacher salary has gone up by 5 percent. But the numbers vary widely from district to district. And it’s too early to say whether the career ladder law is helping Idaho schools recruit and retain teachers. Details (and district numbers) here. Meanwhile, legislative Democrats proposed a loan forgiveness bill to help rural schools recruit staff.
“Potential grizzlies.” Donald Trump’s choice for education secretary faced a turbulent Senate confirmation hearing Tuesday evening. Betsy DeVos fielded pointed questions about her long-held support of school choice initiatives and rebuffed suggestions that she supports controversial “conversion therapy” for LGBT students. Citing a school in Wyoming, she suggested schools should have the option of keeping guns on hand, to ward off “potential grizzlies.” See a roundup here.
In other Trump-related news, four students from the Idaho School for the Deaf and Blind watched the inauguration after winning an online contest.
Bishop Kelly battles snow. As the wild winter of 2017 continues to play havoc with school schedules, Bishop Kelly High School fought back Thursday. Bishop Kelly’s building was closed, but the private high school hosted an online learning day instead.
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Going to waste. It’s a simple fact of life: Kids won’t and don’t eat everything that’s served up in the school cafeteria. One Eastern Idaho school district tried to quantify the problem. The results are here.
Encouraging grades. Boise State University researchers asked Idahoans what they think about education in Idaho. Nearly 37 percent of respondents rated Idaho’s schools as “excellent” or “good,” up from 28 percent in 2016. And respondents gave higher marks to their local schools. Details here.
Kevin Richert is a reporter and blogger with Idaho Education News, an independent site focused on K-12 policy and politics funded by the J.A. and Kathryn Albertson Family Foundation. Richert has worked as an Idaho reporter, editor and columnist since 1985.