Master Educator Premium – Audio from Meetings / Documents

The State Board of Ed sent me a significant amount of materials pertaining to the development of the Mahster Educator Premium program.  Attached are all the materials they sent me.

Obviously, I have not had time to look at each file.  If you find anything worth interest during your examination please let me know at levibcavener@gmail.com.

Unfortunately, you cannot create “folders” in wordpress, so the files are kind of a mess, but they are all there.  Enjoy perusing! Continue reading

It Doesn’t Have to be This Way: Inside Idaho Teachers’ Shopping Carts

As you do your grocery shopping this week, take a stroll over to the school supply section.  It is easy to the spot the teachers over there.  They usually don’t have any kids with them, but their shopping carts are filled with pencils, paper, and markers up to the limit set for the sale of each item allowed by the store.

These are the same teachers that make up Idaho’s working poor and have little to no disposable income.  But yet, here they are buying in bulk during the sales so that they will have the materials they need for their classrooms. Continue reading

Guest Post – What is the Idaho Way?

By Joanne Holtz

Joanne Holtz

Representative Barbara Ehardt and twenty-seven of her fellow Republican members of Idaho’s House of Representatives recently sent a letter to Boise State University’s incoming president Dr. Marlene Tromp, encouraging her to eliminate specific diversity programs currently offered by the university. The representatives provided two rationales—increased tuition for BSU students and adherence to the “Idaho way”—as legitimate reasons for eliminating these specific programs. The tone of their message came across more as informing Dr. Tromp of how she should do her job than from a legitimate concern for all of Boise State’s students.

Continue reading

When an Idaho Charter School Doubles as Church

Thomas Jefferson Charter School is located in Caldwell, Idaho with a mission statement of creating “virtuous citizen leaders.”   However, Thomas Jefferson is also home to the congregation of Wellsprings Church.

Idaho’s charter schools are public schools bound to the same laws, codes, and regulations of any other school and government entity.  The entanglement between a public school’s facility hosting a religious event is worth an examination. Continue reading

Idaho’s teachers are the new working poor

Levi B Cavener

Idaho delayed implementation of raising base salary for Gem State educators to $40,000 this year.  Instead, Governor Little lobbied to raise it to only $38,500 with a promise to reaching the $40,000 benchmark next year.

And although much has been made of increasing base salaries of Idaho’s teachers through the tiered licensure initiative, recent work by the Idaho Education Association showed that when adjusted for inflation, Idaho’s teachers have actually lost 6.9% of their compensation when adjusted for inflation in comparison to ten years ago.  We are losing ground, not gaining it.  

Continue reading

An Open Letter and a Petition

Here is the open letter  I sent to every member of the house/senate committee members, the State Board of Education, and the Governor’s office.

Please take the time to sign this petition to help pressure those folks in making reasonable changes to the current Master Educator Premium in order alleviate the current exceptional onerous process of applying which leaves many Jedi quality educators behind.

Sign the petition now!

An Open Letter to the Idaho Legislature, State Board of Education, and Governor’s office.

Continue reading

A (Better) Response from the State Board of Education Regarding Master Educator Premiums

By Levi B Cavener (Note, the following is intended to be satirical)

Levi B Cavener

Executive Director Matt Freeman of the State Board of Education shared a piece in which he suggested that educators need to be better informed of facts regarding Master Educator Premiums.  My “teacher-mode” kicked in while reading his editorial, and I have made some revisions to his writing which I have shared below: (Note, the following are my words, not Director Freeman’s.  We can only wish the SBE could treat teachers this way).

First, I want to issue the most pleasant of greetings to Idaho’s teachers during this summer.  I know this message will find Gem State Educators all across the country taking professional development, university courses, advanced placement training, etc.  I appreciate how Idaho leads the nation in its teachers taking unpaid time in order to benefit their students.

I want you to know that the State Board of Education is listening to the conversation and frustration of Idaho’s teachers regarding the Master Educator Premium program which has its first submissions due at the end of this month.  We believe leadership starts at the top, which is why SBE President Critchfield has instructed all SBE members and staff to develop a portfolio of their own in order to demonstrate our mastery in leading Idaho’s education system.

Continue reading