PIE Network member Idaho Business for Education (IBE), in addition to HP, Inc. recently announced the findings of their Statewide Study on Education and the Economy in Idaho. Featuring 1,750+ surveys and 80+ interviews completed by more than 2,000 business leaders, teachers, school leaders, and government representatives, the five-month study is one of the largest ever conducted on education and workforce in the state.
“Now it is up to all of us, working together, to set every Idaho student up for success in school, work, and life.”
According to the study, stakeholders agree that the nature of “work” is continually evolving, and that non-cognitive skills, such as social-emotional learning, are of increasing value. In addition to providing a list of key recommendations for Idaho’s government and education leaders, some key findings from the study include:
- Idahoans feel the main goal for Idaho’s state education system should be to help young people grow personally and intellectually, rather than strict job training—although a balance is preferable.
- Idaho’s teachers feel undervalued, with many expressing the need for other sectors to publicly recognize and partner with them.
- Early literacy and reading skills were cited as essential ingredients to improving student outcomes.
- Education-related groups value autonomy, and also a statewide vision for education that is customizable to local contexts.
- Mental health emerged as a major issue of concern, both for students suffering from it and for the impact on resources required to provision aid to those who need it.
“Thanks to the thousands of Idahoans who helped us with this study, we have a good handle on the challenges facing our education system,” said Rod Gramer, IBE president and CEO. “We also know the important ways we can increase the personal and academic growth of our students. Now it is up to all of us, working together, to set every Idaho student up for success in school, work, and life.”
Advocates who want to learn more about the report can find additional information, including a download link to a presentation of the findings and other supporting documents, here. Full documentation of the study and recommendations, including the literature review, methodology, findings, and analysis will be published in early August. If you’d like to connect with IBE, please reach out.