Legislators in Boise continue to debate how to use the state’s 1.6 plus billion-dollar surplus and additional federal funds. At the beginning of the legislative session, Governor Little proposed allocating over 1.1 billion towards education over the next five years. Literacy and medical benefits for teachers are current areas of focus. Literacy has been a priority for Little, who has increased the line-item funding for literacy intervention. This year he recommended spending 47 million dollars to expand full day kindergarten and literacy interventions resources.

“I am personally delighted with the commitment the governor has provided to our education system. It’s not just this year. Really since Governor Little came into office, he has been a huge supporter of Idaho’s education system and Idaho students.”  

Literacy has been a concern in Idaho, but Liebich has been that spending on education programs makes a difference. Although data for the last few school years has been unclear due to the pandemic, recent literacy data from fall of 2021 showed that Idaho outperformed many states throughout the country.

“We (performed) better than I would have anticipated given all the unfinished learning that occurred because of the pandemic,” Liebich said.

He credits this success partially due to the efforts made to keep students in classrooms.

The legislature will continue to propose and pass bills.