Lots and lots of people spoke at the education stakeholders task force forum in Boise this evening; by my count, 37 had testified by the time the meeting ended around 9:20 p.m. Among those, 15 spoke out against the new Common Core standards. The next-most common theme was the need for increased funding for Idaho’s schools, followed by a call for more focus on early-childhood education, special education needs, increased flexibility for Idaho school districts, increased teacher pay and skepticism over merit-pay plans.
“This is not the end of the information-gathering,” task force chairman Richard Westerberg, a state Board of Education member, told the crowd at the close of the hearing. Comments still are being accepted via email, at firstname.lastname@example.org. Plus, Westerberg said comments from all seven public forums around the state will be transcribed and given to all members of the 31-member Task Force for Improving Education; more than a dozen of those members attended tonight’s forum.
Said Westerberg, “This has been a good evening. I appreciate your passion, appreciate your attendance.”