VanOrden appointed to state charter commission

BOISE — The outgoing chairwoman of the House Education Committee has been appointed to the Idaho Public Charter School Commission.

Rep. Julie VanOrden

Rep. Julie VanOrden’s four-year term on the commission starts immediately, State Board of Education spokesman Mike Keckler said.

“I’m excited about this appointment,” VanOrden said in a State Board news release. “I feel like my experience working with charter schools both in the Legislature and at the local level will be of value to the (PCSC).”

Julianne Young of Blackfoot unseated VanOrden in a GOP primary upset victory in May. VanOrden, of Pingree, recently told Idaho Education News that she had considered launching a write-in campaign to remain in the Legislature, but eventually ruled against it.

VanOrden is completing her third term representing House Seat B in the Legislature’s District 31, which takes in East Idaho’s Bingham County.

Among her other duties, VanOrden will continue her work on the state’s K-12 funding formula committee until her term ends in December. At that time, House Republican leaders will pick a new Education Committee chair.

House Speaker Scott Bedke, R-Oakley, appointed VanOrden to the commission.

The charter school commission is the authorizing body for 41 of the state’s 56 charter schools. The commission also performs an oversight role over the growing charter school sector, and produces an annual report on charter schools’ academic performance, financial health and student demographics.

VanOrden replaces Kelly Murphey, of Castleford, whose PCSC term expired in May.

Devin Bodkin

Devin Bodkin

EdNews assistant editor and reporter Devin Bodkin is a former high school English teacher who specializes in stories about charter schools and educating students who live in poverty. He lives and works in East Idaho. Follow Devin on Twitter @dsbodkin. He can be reached by email at [email protected].

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