Boise trustee to resign in June

Boise School Board trustee Andy Hawes will vacate his position, prompted by a career move to Washington. He announced the decision at Monday’s board meeting, but his formal resignation won’t come until the June meeting.

“The advance notice is to give the Board plenty of time to plan for the appointment process, as well as give me the opportunity to express my appreciation for those I have been fortunate enough to work with in my capacity as Trustee,” Hawes said in a district press release.

Andy Hawes

After being appointed to the board in April 2021, Hawes ran for election in September. With 70% of the vote, he easily regained his seat on the board. As a trustee, he’s assisted with district community relations and communication efforts, and helped implement the board’s Student Advisory Committee.

With graduations and a looming budget due date, May and June will be busy months for the board. But Hawes plans to be there every step of the way until his resignation formalizes.

“There’s plenty of work for me to do in the next few weeks,” Hawes said.

More information on the appointment process to fill Hawes’ vacancy will come after the board officially accepts his resignation in June, according to the district.

Board hears new dress code proposal at Monday meeting

The Boise district’s new dress code proposal went before the board Monday for a first reading.

The current dress code — first adopted in 1997 and last updated in 2021 — bans apparel typical to most policies: clothing related to drugs, alcohol, gangs, pornography or illegal activities. But according to district data, there have been discrepancies in how different Boise schools have monitored and enforced the code.

In February, the district held the first of four public meetings to discuss the dress code and collect input from local patrons. Around 100 patrons showed across all four meetings. The board’s Student Advisory Committee also provided feedback on the proposal.

Through the public meetings, the district found that some Boise schools have different versions of the dress code in their student handbooks, according to Boise administrator Rebecca Anderson.

With a new dress code, the district hopes to remove arbitrary standards and language, encourage positive student-staff relationships, and limit the policy’s impact on teaching time. The goal is to eliminate those discrepancies and settle on a dress code that serves all students and families.

The proposal also emphasizes enforcement training for administrators and school staff.

To review the proposed policy, click here.

On Monday, two district patrons gave their input to the board, including former trustee Steve Schmidt, who was ousted in the September 2022 election by teenager Shiva Rajbhandari, who currently sits on the board.

Schmidt called out the district’s data, which showed that female, Hispanic and Black students had disproportionately higher dress code citations compared to their peers.

Schmidt took issue with the way the data was presented to district patrons, and said the new policy lowers the bar.

“We’re doing a disservice to our students,” Schmidt told the board.

Another district parent criticized the board’s communication efforts, and urged the board to put more effort into sharing information about the new dress code with parents.

The board did not take action on the policy Monday night. The policy will not reappear before the board until the July meeting. Public comment will be accepted.

Sadie Dittenber

Sadie Dittenber

Reporter Sadie Dittenber focuses on K-12 policy and politics. She is a College of Idaho graduate, born and raised in the Treasure Valley. You can follow Sadie on Twitter @sadiedittenber and send her news tips at [email protected].

Get EdNews in your inbox

Weekly round up every Friday