State Politics

Ivanka Trump and Apple’s CEO visit the Treasure Valley

Presidential adviser Ivanka Trump arrives at Wilder School

Ivanka Trump, daughter of and adviser to President Donald Trump, and Apple CEO Tim Cook visit the Idaho town of Wilder to tour the school district's implementation of technology in the classroom.
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Ivanka Trump, daughter of and adviser to President Donald Trump, and Apple CEO Tim Cook visit the Idaho town of Wilder to tour the school district's implementation of technology in the classroom.

Ivanka Trump — President Donald Trump’s adviser and daughter — and Apple Inc. CEO Tim Cook visited Wilder schools Tuesday to examine the district’s use of technology.

“Adviser to the President Ivanka Trump is traveling to Idaho as part of her ongoing workforce development and STEM initiatives and will visit the Wilder School District with Apple CEO Tim Cook,” said Judd Deere, director of media affairs at the White House.

The stop is the latest in a series of tours by Trump as part of her work with the National Council for the American Worker. Last month, for example, she visited the NASCAR Technical Institute in Mooresville, North Carolina, the Raleigh News and Observer reported.

Trump tweeted about coming to Idaho on Tuesday morning, underscoring the visit’s focus on technology in the classroom.

Apple has recently worked with Trump and the White House to highlight education best practices for STEM and computer science. Cook connected Trump earlier this year with the Waukee Innovation and Learning Center, part of the Waukee School District in Iowa.

The ConnectED program that Wilder benefited from dates to the Obama administration. Wilder was among 114 low-income schools in 29 states to receive help from Apple two years ago for students without easy access to technology, the Idaho Statesman reported in March 2016. The company at that time donated an iPad to every student and teacher in the district, for use at school and at home.

A small group gathered before Ivanka Trump and Apple CEO Tim Cook arrived to tour Wilder Elementary School and learn about its use of technology. Some gathered to welcome Cook and Trump, others gathered to protest the visit to the town.

“Apple is working with districts where the low-income student population is at least 96 percent. Wilder is the only school district in Idaho to receive the Apple grant,” the 2016 story said.

“Apple’s donation is a key ingredient in Wilder School District’s plan to move next fall toward an education system based on mastery of subjects, not hours spent in a classroom. The plan will do away with regular class periods as students use their devices to guide their education and teachers become more like mentors, said Superintendent Jeff Dillon. Students might move quickly through some subjects such as English, for instance, but need greater time for math, Jensen said.”

Watch for more coverage of Trump’s and Cook’s visit online Tuesday at IdahoStatesman.com, and in Wednesday’s print Idaho Statesman.

This story has been updated to reflect Tuesday’s visit.

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