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Proud to support Parent Advisory Council

March 7, 2023

By District 1 Representative Mark Sauter

Since the start of the session, education has been a hot topic. Our public school system is one of our greatest assets. Our graduates are our future, and if we believe in the power and value of each individual Idahoan, we must do our best to support their education.

I am proud to support Governor Little in joining legislators and Idaho education leaders in announcing the establishment of the new Parent Advisory Council for the popular Empowering Parents grant program.

The Empowering Parents grant program acknowledges the pivotal role of parents as the primary decision-makers in their children's education and aims to support families in taking charge of their children's learning tools beyond the classroom. The program is available to public, private and homeschooled families.

Over the years, the Empowering Parents grants have assisted thousands of Idaho families in covering the costs of essential educational resources such as computers, software, instructional materials and tutoring. It is a successful and well-liked program that deserves our continued investment, and with the guidance of the Parent Advisory Council, we are committed to further strengthening it.

The Parent Advisory Council will play a vital role in advising the State Board of Education on ways to enhance the Empowering Parents grant program. It will consist of seven members, with three members appointed by the Governor, two members by the Senate Pro Tem, and two members by the Speaker of the House. The council will feature regional representation from across the state and will be led by Superintendent Debbie Critchfield, who will serve as the nonvoting chair.

Throughout the summer, Superintendent Critchfield and the council will embark on a state-wide tour, engaging with and listening to Idaho families about their experiences with the Empowering Parents grant program. Subsequently, the council will produce a report with recommendations for the State Board of Education to review in the fall.

We welcome any parent residing in Idaho with a school-aged child (K-12) to apply for membership on the council. The application process will be open until April 30. To learn more about the application process, click here.

I believe that our children's education is vital to the future of Idaho, and I am committed to supporting efforts to improve it.

Thank you for allowing me to serve as your representative.

Questions or Comments? Send us an email!

Mike Weland, Publisher

6931 Main St.
P.O. Box 1625
Bonners Ferry, ID 83805
(208) 295-1016

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