Education

Tuition
8:09 am
Thu April 17, 2014

College Tuition Hikes Approved For Idaho Schools

Credit Malate269 / Wikimedia Commons

The Idaho State Board of Education has approved tuition increases.

The board on Wednesday approved an increase of 4 percent at the University of Idaho and Boise State University.

Idaho State University will see a 3.5 percent increase and Lewis-Clark State College a 2 percent increase.

The increases mean full-time students at the University of Idaho will pay $6,784 a year and Boise State students will pay $6,640.

Idaho State University tuition rises to $6,566, while tuition at Lewis-Clark State College jumps to $5,900.

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Education
5:43 pm
Mon April 7, 2014

Northwest Students To Test Their Code-Breaking Skills

Stuart Boersma is a professor at Central Washington University. He’s organizing a code-breaking completion for Northwest college and high school students.
Stuart Boersma

Code language is probably as old as language itself. Now, two Northwest university professors have launched a competition to test students’ code breaking skills.

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2014 Election
4:38 pm
Wed April 2, 2014

Removed From Idaho Education Task Force, One Member Cries Foul

Education Improvement Task Force members at a public meeting last year. Mike Lanza (left) sits next to Rodger Brown, the governor's deputy chief of staff.
Credit Adam Cotterell / Boise State Public Radio

A member of Idaho’s 'Task Force for Improving Education' has been kicked out of the group. Mike Lanza says he was told it was because he went to work for Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter’s Democratic challenger.

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Education
9:53 am
Wed April 2, 2014

Meridian School District Removes Sherman Alexie Novel From Curriculum

Alexie's book won the 2007 National Book Award for Young People's Literature.

Trustees at the Meridian School District in southwest Idaho have voted to remove an award winning novel from the school's curriculum after some parents complained.

The Idaho Statesman reports in a story on Wednesday that trustees voted 2-1 to keep in place a hold on "The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian" by Sherman Alexie.

The National Book Award winning novel is narrated by a 14-year-old whose transfer makes him the only Native American in an all-white school.

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Education
12:21 pm
Mon March 31, 2014

Idaho Kids Take New High-Tech Test This Week

Idaho has been giving its test the I-SAT on computers for years. Other states that gave their tests on paper have had to make big investments in computers to transition to the Smarter Balanced Assessment.
Credit Adam Cotterell / Boise State Public Radio

Idaho school kids in 3rd through 8th, and 11th grades will be taking a new test starting Monday. The Smarter Balanced Assessment replaces the I-SAT which Idaho had been using to measure student achievement for years. Smarter Balanced is based on the Common Core standards Idaho and most other states have adopted. Students in more than 20 states are taking it this week.

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Idaho Legislature
11:14 am
Thu March 20, 2014

Idaho House Passes $1.37B Budget For Schools

Credit Samantha Wright / Boise State Public Radio

Lawmakers in Idaho's House of Representatives have approved the state's public schools budget, including a 1 percent pay increase for teachers and administrators and money to improve classroom technology.

The House passed the $1.37 billion budget in a series of seven bills on Wednesday evening. The money represents about a 5 percent increase over last year. It now goes to the Senate.

Supporters said they felt it was important hold some money back this year to rebuild the state's coffers in case the economy again turns sour.

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Education
9:42 am
Mon March 17, 2014

Coeur d'Alene Tribe Donates $1.2 Million To School Programs

Credit Malate269 / Wikimedia Commons

The Coeur d'Alene Tribe has donated $1.2 million to 52 educational programs in Idaho.

The Coeur d'Alene Press reports the tribe made the announcement Thursday.

The money is going to support educational efforts ranging from reading, music, arts, science, college scholarship programs and vocational preparation.

The chairman of the Coeur d'Alene Tribe, Chief Allen, says the money will allow students to focus on learning.

Most of the money was distributed in Kootenai and Benewah counties in northern Idaho.

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Poverty
11:03 am
Tue March 11, 2014

Elementary School Pilot Program Helps Family Escape Homelessness

Fifth grader Simya Gantt is doing better in school thanks to a unique program in Tacoma, Wash.
Taylor Winkel Northwest News Network

Originally published on Tue March 11, 2014 5:17 pm

Across the country more than one million kids may not know where they’re going to sleep tonight.

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Idaho Legislature
9:48 am
Thu March 6, 2014

Idaho Schools May Soon Have More Money To Improve Student Safety

School officials may be permitted to use cigarette tax money for safety measures.
Credit Adam Cotterell / Boise State Public Radio

A lawmaker education panel has given their approval to a bill giving Idaho school districts more flexibility in using cigarette tax revenue to improve student safety.

The House Education Committee sent the school safety bill to the House Thursday morning.

The bill allows schools to use cigarette tax revenues for suicide prevention and other student safety efforts, instead of using it solely for substance abuse prevention.

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Idaho Legislature
12:47 pm
Mon March 3, 2014

Preschool Pilot Program Wins Initial Support From Idaho House Panel

Hy Kloc
Credit Idaho Legislature

A bill to launch a preschool pilot program in Idaho has won the support of the House Education Committee.

The pilot would provide half-day educational programs in five Idaho schools, with potential to expand if data shows it gets kids ready for kindergarten.

It carries a $1.4 million price tag for all three years, but Boise Democrat Rep. Hy Kloc stressed Monday less than half of that will come from the state's coffers.

The rest will likely come from grants.

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Idaho Legislature
9:58 am
Mon February 24, 2014

Idaho Budget Panel Gives $6.6 Million To Education Network

Companies running Idaho's troubled broadband education network will be paid for work completed since last year, but lawmakers haven't decided how to handle funding for the coming year amid a contract dispute.

The Joint Finance-Appropriations Committee voted unanimously Monday to cover the federal government's share of funding, about $6.6 million.

The Federal Communication Commission hasn't paid Tennessee-based Education Networks of America and CenturyLink since last year.

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Idaho Legislature
6:05 am
Mon February 24, 2014

Idaho State Senator Pushing For Guns On University Campuses Says It's A Basic Right

Sen. Curt McKenzie, R-Nampa.
Credit Scott Graf / Boise State Public Radio

On one corner of Curt McKenzie’s desk at the Idaho Capitol sit three candy jars. On the opposite corner - an Army green ammunition box.

McKenzie is the Republican state senator from Nampa who introduced a controversial bill that would allow some people to carry guns on Idaho’s college campuses. The bill has passed the Senate and is now in the House.

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Campus Safety
10:28 pm
Fri February 21, 2014

Boise State: Allowing Guns On Campus Will Cost University About $2 Million Each Year

Boise State University says proposed legislation that would allow guns to legally be carried on Idaho campuses would require an overhaul of its campus security.
Credit Scott Graf / Boise State Public Radio

Boise State University says proposed legislation that would allow guns to be legally carried on its campus would cost the school about $2 million each year.

BSU’s head of security and police services, Jon Uda, detailed the costs in a university memo. In it, he says having guns on campus would present “myriad” of new threats for campus security.

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Reader's Corner
6:00 pm
Fri February 21, 2014

Literacy Educator Jeffrey Wilhelm Says Let Kids Read What They Want

Research shows that kids who read well do better in school and have a distinct advantage in developing communication and logical thinking skills. Avid readers also tend to be more engaged in the world around them.

But how do you get young people to want to read? Today’s guest, Jeffrey Wilhelm, believes that kids and adolescents should be allowed to choose at least some of the books they read for school, so that their reading adds meaning to their lives.

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School Safety
9:28 am
Mon February 17, 2014

Most Idaho Schools Are Too Easy To Walk Into, Safety Report Finds

Boise elementary students wait for the bus
Credit Adam Cotterell / Boise State Public Radio

Idaho’s Department of Education Monday released the results of an independent assessment of safety and security at the state’s schools.

This assessment was recommended by a school safety task force assembled in 2012 after the school shooting in Newtown, Connecticut. Matt McCarter oversaw the task force work for the department.

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Election 2014
4:25 pm
Wed February 12, 2014

Third Idaho Republican Enters Race For Schools Chief

Credit Courtesy Sherri Ybarra

The race to lead Idaho's public schools is growing more-crowded — and potentially more raucous — with the addition of yet another Republican candidate to the field.

Mountain Home educator and administrator Sherri Ybarra threw her hat into ring, announcing Wednesday she'll vie for the Republican nomination in the May 20 primary election.

Ybarra joins Republicans already in the race, Grangeville teacher John Eynon and American Falls principal Randy Jensen.

The lone Democratic candidate, so far, is Jana Jones, who was defeated in 2006.

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Education
7:30 am
Tue February 11, 2014

Idaho Isn't Very Fair About How It Doles Out School Cash, Report Finds

Credit FlickingerBrad / Flickr Creative Commons

A report from the New Jersey-based advocacy group the Education Law Center, says Idaho does not do a good job spending its education money fairly for all students.

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Education
11:53 am
Mon February 10, 2014

Luna: Idaho May Have To Repay $13.3 Million In Education Broadband Cash

Credit Shane Pope / Flickr Creative Commons

Idaho may have to repay $13.3 million if federal officials determine the state broke contracting rules on a $60 million education broadband project mired in a lawsuit for nearly as long as it's existed.

Department of Administration director Teresa Luna told the House Education Committee that even should Idaho prevail in the legal case, it still could be forced to repay the money that's gone to the Idaho Education Network.

The project is already growing far more expensive than Idaho intended.

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Reader's Corner
6:00 pm
Fri February 7, 2014

Why American Kids Aren't The Smartest In The World With Author Amanda Ripley

Preparing students to excel in a fast-changing world is a concern for many nations.  Some countries, including our own, have implemented a variety of education reforms over recent decades, only to see piddling results. Others, including  Finland, South Korea and Poland, have realized major gains.

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Education
7:05 am
Mon February 3, 2014

Twin Falls Wants Voters To Approve $74 Million Bond To Ease School Overcrowding

These Twin Falls High School chemistry students would see safety and security upgrades at their school if the district's bond passes. Their counterparts at Canyon Ridge High would see an expansion to make room for nearly 500 more students.
Credit Beth Pendergrass / Twin Falls School District

The Twin Falls School District is asking voters for $73.8 million in the form of a 25 year bond. The district says it needs the money because their elementary schools are overcrowded and their middle and high schools soon will be.

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