Ybarra hires Laraway as new communications director

State superintendent Sherri Ybarra is going in-house for her new communications chief.

Karlynn Laraway

Karlynn Laraway will shift from her current job as Ybarra’s director of assessment and accountability. She will make the transition to communications director in the weeks to come, as the State Department of Education fills the assessment and accountability post.

For the past four years, Laraway had overseen state assessment programs, including the Idaho Standards Achievement Test in math and English language arts and the new version of the Idaho Reading Indicator, launched in 2018. She also helped develop the SDE’s accountability system, which identifies low-performing schools, and she led the SDE’s efforts to launch a new school and district report card.

“I am humbled by the opportunity to serve the superintendent in this new role, and I look forward to highlighting the important work my colleagues in the department are doing every day to support schools and students in Idaho,” Laraway said in a news release Wednesday.

A Boise native, Laraway holds a bachelor’s degree in communications from Boise State University and is completing a master’s degree in adult organizational learning and leadership at the University of Idaho.

She will earn $86,840 in her new role, an increase from her current salary of $78,020.

Laraway replaces Scott Phillips, who left the SDE in May to join the Idaho Department of Lands as policy and communications chief.



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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