Statist of the Week: Idaho State Board of Education

June 28, 2021

It’s time once again for our Statist of the Week. This week’s winner is the State Board of Education: Yes, that’s Kurt Liebich, Emma Atchley, Linda Clark, Debbie Critchfield, Shawn Keough, David Hill, Andrew Scoggin, and Sherri Ybarra. They scored a statist homerun by voting unanimously for state funding of a full-day kindergarten program. 

But the board didn’t stop there. The members also voted to support a student loan forgiveness program. The beneficiaries would be teachers who work in rural areas or with at-risk student groups. 

Crtichfield, who is running for superintendent of public instruction, told the media the board the full-day kindergarten concept is meant to catch up to what parents are demanding. The state funds half-day kindergartens, and some school districts have paid for the full-day program using property tax money, so, why not?  

The board of education is calling for the state to pick up the tab of full-day kindergartens throughout the state. But true to form, the plan does not call for student performance to increase. Nor does it call for property taxes to go down because the state’s paying more. No one is getting more tax relief from this. No one is even expecting a quality education experience. It’s just a means for parents to offload their kids onto the public school system, and the State Board couldn't be happier to go along. That’s what Education Inc. does—it looks for new ways to have more kids in the government system for longer periods of time. 

It’s not terribly surprising we find ourselves here considering that the SBOE worked really hard last year to support a state pre-kindergarten program. The board will basically support anything that puts students in the hands of government-paid educators. Nothing worse than parents having their kids at home or hiring their own early childhood education professionals that are not part of the public school system, right? 

Now let’s look at the student loan forgiveness program and why it’s awful. Democrats have proposed such programs for years, but the programs are also popular among liberal Republicans. It’s a form of socialism. It takes money from people who have earned it, and gives it to those who have not. In this case, imagine the barista working at your favorite local coffee shop takes out student loans to afford college. Under the SBOE’s plan, she’ll still end up paying tuition through her taxes to support the education expenses of people who are selected to receive the payment. 

Or take my son, for example. He worked hard and saved up for college. He has no college debt, but now he’s expected to take on the college debt of others. How is that fair? How is that anything other than a statist move?

I could go on. But these are proposals backed by a State Board of Education that has failed to maintain any real oversight over the state’s education system, and now they’re proposing expansions of the government education system, redistribution of wealth, and zero accountability. And that’s why Idaho’s State Board of Education is this week’s Statist of the Week. 
Who should be next week’s winner? Drop me a line, [email protected]. Tell me who you think is most deserving of this special recognition. Be sure to hit the like button, the bell notification, subscribe to this channel, share this content with your friends and I will talk to you all again next time!

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