Yesterday, Idaho Governor Butch Otter delivered his 10th State of the State address and once again embraced reform policies to improve the education system for all students in the state.
The Foundation for Excellence in Education (@ExcelinEd) applauds Governor Otter for working to ensure every school in the state prepares Idaho’s children for a life where they are able to thrive and achieve the American dream. Governor Otter used his state of the state address to underscore his dedication to ensuring that the state’s education system be student-centered and focused on improving achievement.
Education highlights in Governor Otter’s remarks included:
- K-3 Reading: Governor Otter understands that reading is the key to lifelong learning. He proposed $10.7 million to pay for intervention support for students in kindergarten through third grade who are not yet proficient on the state reading indicator.“Through the third grade, they [students] learn to read. But from the fourth grade on, they read to learn. So if we’re serious about wanting long-term improvement in school outcomes, we must intensify our efforts to provide the kind of proven support that works for students who struggle to develop reading skills,” Governor Otter said.
- Competency-Based Education: Building on last year’s legislation to support the voluntary transition of schools in Idaho to a mastery-based education system, Governor Otter said, “I saw firsthand the difference that individualized learning can make in comprehension, application and ultimately mastery. From reading proficiency to mastering concepts and from our community colleges to our universities, our emphasis must be on going the extra mile to prepare students to succeed in a complex and competitive global economy. That preparation in turn will support and advance the economic growth and increased prosperity that we are all striving to achieve.” His budget recommendation includes $1.1 million to support up to 20 school districts in developing model programs for others to follow throughout Idaho.
- College and Career Readiness: “Ensuring that students are college and career ready is as critical to employers as it is to Idaho’s young people. That’s why higher standards, more individualized learning, more dual-credit offerings, and more professional-technical options are high priorities in my budget recommendation.” Governor Otter’s budget recommendation includes $3.8 million to address those training backlogs in industry areas where graduates will find more high-wage jobs.
In states across the country, we see reform embraced by Governors, legislative leaders, schools and parents. Governor Otter again demonstrated Idaho’s commitment to student-centered education. We look forward to continuing the partnership with Idaho’s leaders to build a better future for our students.
Thank you for your continued support.
Vice President of Advocacy
The Foundation for Excellence in Education