New Plymouth schools chief runs for House

(UPDATED, 2:37 p.m., with Kerby confirming his candidacy.)

New Plymouth district Superintendent Ryan Kerby has filed paperwork for a possible run for the Legislature.

Last week, Kerby named a campaign treasurer. This move is a precursor to raising money for a possible campaign.

Kerby, a Republican, is looking at the legislative spot now held by former House Speaker Lawerence Denney, R-Midvale. Denney is stepping down from the House to run in an open but crowded race for secretary of state.

In an email to Idaho Education News Tuesday, Kerby confirmed that he is running.

“I love this part of Idaho, know many of the players in the legislative process, and believe I can get people collaborating effectively to help make District 9 a better place to live.  I will work to improve the local economy by emphasizing the development of the work force, developing District 9’s significant natural resources, and maximizing the benefits of local agriculture.

“In September all four counties in District 9 had unemployment higher than the state average. I will fight to bring good paying jobs to this area, with the initial goal of unemployment in each of the four counties being less than the state average.”

District 9 takes in Adams, Payette and Washington counties, and a small part of Canyon County.

Kerby is no stranger to state education politics. During the 2012 election, New Plymouth’s teacher merit pay plan figured prominently in the debate over Proposition 2, a statewide merit pay plan. Voters rejected Proposition 2 and the other two Students Come First education laws.

Kerby ran for state superintendent in 1998, opposing GOP incumbent Anne Fox. He finished fourth in a four-way primary, receiving 14 percent of the vote.

(Click here to download the up-to-date list of candidate filings.)

Kevin Richert

Kevin Richert

Senior reporter and blogger Kevin Richert specializes in education politics and education policy. He has more than 30 years of experience in Idaho journalism. He is a frequent guest on "Idaho Reports" on Idaho Public Television and "Idaho Matters" on Boise State Public Radio. Follow Kevin on Twitter: @KevinRichert. He can be reached at [email protected]

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