Ybarra briefs Risch on safety plan

A footnote to Monday’s post about state superintendent Sherri Ybarra’s travels to Washington, D.C.: Ybarra spent part of Wednesday talking school safety with Sen. Jim Risch.

Ybarra briefed Risch on her controversial $20 million plan, dubbed Keep Idaho Students Safe, or KISS.

“As a former county prosecuting attorney and state legislator, Senator Risch has a wealth of experience and a great understanding of addressing risk behaviors in kids and developing effective, fiscally responsible public policies,” Ybarra said in a Wednesday news release. “I appreciated that he listened to our plan and offered his advice for moving forward.”

The meeting between the two Republicans did not appear on Ybarra’s weekly schedule, released in a media advisory Monday. As Idaho Education News reported Monday, Ybarra flew to Washington Tuesday to attend an education reform summit sponsored by the Foundation for Excellence in Education, a Tallahassee, Fla.-based group. But the summit doesn’t begin until Thursday.

Ybarra spokesman Scott Phillips said Ybarra was attending meetings and a banquet in Washington Wednesday. But he made no mention of the briefing with Risch — either in Monday’s media advisory or in an interview with Idaho Education News.

Pressed for details about Ybarra’s trip, Phillips encouraged Idaho Education News to file a public records request.

Idaho Education News filed a request on Monday. On Wednesday, the State Department of Education said Ybarra has filed $1,132.70 in expenses for her trip so far: $533.70 for airfare, and $599 to register for the summit.

Ybarra is returning to Boise late Thursday — but the summit runs through early afternoon Friday.


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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