$50 Million? Let’s Pass

Sep 19, 2011

The state of Idaho could apply for a 50 million dollar grant to improve pre-kindergarten education.  But the state department of Ed doesn’t want it to. That’s what department representatives told other state agencies last week.  Idaho Department of Education spokeswoman Melissa McGrath says the state education department is trying to wean itself off one-time money.  The other reason is preschool is not a priority for Idaho.

Melissa McGrath “All the stakeholders in education have gotten together and come up with goals and objectives over the past four years for where education should go in Idaho. Preschool is not part of that plan.”

The money is part of a federal program known as Race to the Top.  The federal grant would require new systems without long-term funding. That’s because Idaho does not have a pre-K component to its public education system, unlike most states.  McGrath says the Ed department only made a recommendation.  The final decision rests with several agencies.