We asked our Facebook followers what questions they wanted us to ask the candidates for state superintendent of public instruction. We go some excellent questions and invited the candidates to answer some or all of them. Here are two answers from candidate Andy Grover.
Evin Langley Fox asks: How do you identify great teachers?
Great teachers know how to engage and instruct students using multiple teaching strategies. This includes tying their curriculum to real life situations, making it relevant and important to the student, and modifying it as necessary to fit and serve the students’ needs. Great teachers build relationships of trust and respect with their students. They possess good communication skills to create an open environment for learning and parent-teacher communication. Finally, a good teacher strives for and recognizes student improvement and mastery, which result in student success.
Tim Rigsby asks: What will your first 30 days in office look like?
An initial strategy will include establishing a team of diverse and qualified leaders from multiple backgrounds. This team will serve and assist Idaho schools. Time will be spent reaching out to districts, charters, and others educational institutions to gain an accurate understanding of the direct needs for Idaho students. I will work with the legislature on a budget that reflects the needs of students in Idaho and will include appropriate funding for the implementation of the twenty recommendations that was created by a committee of Idahoans who made up the Governor’s task force. I have a positive relationship with many legislators and will work proactively with the governor and the legislators.
Jamie Briggs Viens asks: What are your top three goals to attain in your tenure?
My focus is centered on student success and moving education forward in Idaho. The first goal is to ensure students the opportunities to be successful and to graduate with the necessary skills to compete in the world market. All students should be allowed the opportunities of earning career-technical certifications to earn a livable wage, earning advanced placement credits, and/or earning dual credits to help to prepare them for college entrance. Students and parents must have choices and opportunities to be successful.
The second goal is to implement the twenty recommendations of the Governor’s task force, which involve a large Idaho-created scope of student-based education goals. The implementation of these must be funded at appropriate levels. Putting these goals in place will help further education, empower teachers, and create more opportunities for student learning.
Finally, it will be to offer parents choices in their students educations. Parents will continue to have choices in charter schools, Traditional public schools, magnet schools, advanced opportunities in dual credits or advanced placement credits, and career/technical certifications. Students and parents need to have the choice in how they are to be educated and continuing to build the types of choices listed above will give parents and students multiple opportunities.
The results of this direction in education will be more students learning at higher levels, more students will go onto college after high school graduation with less remediation when they get there, parents will continue to have more choices in education, teachers will be paid at a professional level, and all students will have equal access to learning opportunities no matter where they live.