The right leader with the right vision: Debbie Critchfield for state superintendent

During my nearly 30 years working in various capacities to support public education, I worked for three superintendents of public instruction. Two of those were Republicans, one was a Democrat. Two were former educators, one was a former elected school board member and Board Chair with a strong political background. Those years and experiences provided me with ample experience about what does and doesn’t make a good Superintendent of Public Instruction. I have never publicly supported a candidate for this office. However, after watching the Superintendent of Public Instruction debates on Idaho Public Television and KTVB Channel 7, I was appalled at the flat-out lies, inaccuracies, and rhetoric that I heard, by two candidates, in response to questions in those debates.

It is critically important that Idahoans, parents, educators, and students elect the best candidate possible to support Idaho’s efforts in public education. Therefore, I am fully supporting Debbie Critchfield for the Superintendent of Public Instruction.

Debbie is a former elected school board member and worked in a school district. She was also President of the State Board of Education. She has dedicated years of her life to doing what is best for public education. It is important to note that all her experience has been as a volunteer.  Those experiences have provided Ms. Critchfield with the experience needed to work with the Governor, legislature, school districts, charter schools, parents, teachers, administrators, and students to pass meaningful legislative initiatives.

This constitutional officer should be bringing expansive and forward-thinking education initiatives and asking for large increases in public education funding. They should not be asking for less money/public education funding than the Governor requests or the legislature funds. They should not be getting into heated vulgar arguments when they lose a vote. They should not be leading the public to believe that everything good that has happened in education is because of their leadership, when in fact it was because of the Governor’s leadership or the State Board of Education’s leadership.

The skills needed to do this job are far more than the skill set of a third-grade teacher or former unsuccessful legislator. Debbie is the only candidate who can accomplish what public education needs and deserves.

I ask you to join me on May 17 by voting for Debbie Critchfield for Superintendent of Public Instruction – the only candidate who can move education in the right direction.

Karen Echeverria

About Karen Echeverria

Karen Echeverria recently retired as the executive director of the Idaho School Boards Association. The Idaho School Boards Association represents school district trustees.

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