The Senate Education Committee today approved three pieces of legislation that make up the Students Come First reform package presented by Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter and Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Luna.
“This is the first step, but a very important step,” Superintendent Luna said. “I am pleased and excited to see this reform plan move forward because it will stabilize our public schools budget and truly make sure Idaho students come first.”
The Students Come First plan is a comprehensive plan to improve Idaho’s public education system by ensuring we have a customer-driven system that educates more students at a higher level with limited resources.
For the past two years, the state has cut revenues at the state level but has done nothing to reduce the costs at the local district level. Under Students Come First, the state will spend what it actually has differently in order to put our public education system back on firm financial footing. It will not just reduce revenues at the state level but also reduces the costs our local districts must shoulder so we can stabilize the public schools budget and direct more money into the classroom, where it’s needed most. With the cost savings, the state will raise teacher pay, implement a system to reward excellence in the classroom, and make unprecedented investments in technology.
The three bills now will go to the full Senate for approval. For more information, please visit http://www.sde.idaho.gov/site/studentsComeFirst/.