Idaho House panel to vote on ed reform bills

BOISE, Idaho (AP) – An Idaho House committee plans to vote Thursday on legislation to eliminate “tenure” for new teachers, restrict collective bargaining and introduce merit pay. If the House Education Committee passes the Republican-backed legislation, it will head to its final hurdle in the GOP-dominated Idaho Legislature. The measures are part of public schools chief Tom Luna’s plan to reform K-12 education in Idaho, where furor over the proposal has triggered teacher and student protests. The 18-member House committee took up the legislation even as the centerpiece of Luna’s plan remains the Senate. The main bill in the reform package would boost technology in the classroom, require online courses and bump up minimum teacher pay while increasing class sizes to pay for the reforms and cutting 770 teaching positions. The bill is being reworked amid lawmaker concerns.

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