Ybarra deputy takes principal job

State Department of Education Deputy Superintendent of Operations Joel Wilson is leaving the department to be an elementary school principal.

Wilson will lead Greenacres Elementary School starting July 1, the Pocatello-Chubbuck School District announced Tuesday.


Wilson’s departure marks the first Idaho EdNews has been able to confirm from the department since schools chief Sherri Ybarra lost last month’s primary election to fellow Republican Debbie Critchfield. Ybarra’s replacement will take office at the beginning of next year. SDE spokeswoman Kris Rodine told EdNews Wednesday that she is still checking on staff resignations at the SDE as Ybarra’s departure date nears.

EdNews will track changeover at the department in the coming months, including when Ybarra’s replacement steps in. Critchfield will face off with Democrat Terry Gilbert for the position in the November general election.

Wilson, who joined Ybarra’s staff last July, has worked as superintendent of the Preston and Aberdeen school districts and holds a doctoral degree in education from Northwest Nazarene University.

“Our learners, parents and staff will benefit from Dr. Wilson’s commitment to the pursuit of educational excellence, experience and leadership as he works to reinforce our mission to Think More, Learn More and Be More Together,” said PCSD 25 Superintendent Douglas Howell.

Summer Institute for teachers

Registration is open for the Idaho Education Association’s 2022 Summer Institute.

The four-day event is set for July 27-30 at Lewis-Clark State College in Lewiston, according to the IEA’s website. Go here to learn more about the institute and register.

The institute will feature at least 63 separate classes, including 13 online offerings, professional and personal learning opportunities in topics from “educator self-care and student loan forgiveness to career advancement and the politics of education,” IEA’s website reads.

The four day conference is free for IEA members, including lodging and meals. Non-member educators may attend for a fee or join the IEA here.

IEA and its Center for Teaching and Learning provide professional learning for educators throughout the year, but Summer Institute is “by far our most popular training opportunity,” said Linda Jones, IEA’s Region 4 director who coordinates trainings. “It’s a great way for educators to recharge and dig deep in areas they want to explore.”

Participants can personalize their training schedule for each day from a variety 90-minute, half-day, and full-day sessions. This year’s conference theme: “Into the Future.”

Nampa announces new parent communications tool

The Nampa School District has adopted a new parent communication and engagement tool for families.

ParentSquare will replace the district’s current tool, Remind, starting July 1, the district announced on its website. The district will no longer support Remind after June 30, 2022.

The new tool will be a hub for all school-related messaging needs, including mass notifications, classroom communications, forms and surveys, and more, the district says.

Parents can choose to receive communication via text, email or the ParentSquare app, and they will be able to respond to push notifications such as attendance notices.

Watch for information on how to sign up in an email around July 1. Learn more about ParentSquare here.

Athletes recognized for academics

The Idaho High School Activities Association has announced its 2022 spring sports academic state champions.

The awards, sponsored by the Idaho Army National Guard, are presented to Idaho varsity sports teams that achieve the highest cumulative grade-point averages throughout the year.

The spring round of awards include track, baseball, softball, tennis and golf. Go here for a full list of winning schools by school size.

Here are the first-place high schools in each category for spring, along with each teams’ collective grade-point averages:

  • Boys track: Marsh Valley, 3.783
  • Girls track: Marsh Valley, 3.941
  • Combined track: Soda Springs: 3.734
  • Baseball: Bishop Kelly (private school), 3.768
  • Softball: Homedale, 3.866
  • Boys tennis: Wood River, 3.898
  • Girls tennis: Century, 3.951
  • Boys golf: Marsh Valley, 3.918
  • Girls golf: Century, 3.953

Middle school teacher wins national fellowship

Middleton High School teacher Kyle Miyauchi won a $2,400 national fellowship for social studies teachers focused on the Constitution, KBOI reports.

The James Madison Memorial Foundation fellowship is aimed at helping secondary civics and history teachers become outstanding teachers of the U.S. Constitution, the organization’s website reads.

Kyle Miyauchi

The money tied to the award will help Miyauchi pursue a masters degree in education with an emphasis in constitutional studies.

Miyauchi, a runner up for last year’s award, told KBOI that he felt “shock, euphoria” and was “numb” when he learned that he won.

“I’m on Cloud 9,” he said.

Miyauchi will spend a month learning from top constitutional scholars at Georgetown University.

Click here for more on the fellowship and here for more on Miyauchi.

Idaho EdNews Staff

Idaho EdNews Staff

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