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Idaho State Board of Education meets at ISU to discuss educational challenges

The Idaho State Board of Education met at Idaho State University on Wednesday to discuss challenges faced by educators today.

One challenge brought to the board’s attention was ISU’s falling retention and enrollment rates. Since 2015, retention rates fell almost 10 percent.

Most of that drop-off comes from first year students who didn’t go on to their sophomore year, according to ISU’s progress report.

Enrollment has also dropped at the school, which officials attribute to lack of international students and low retention rates.

ISU submitted a plan to create a task force that would find out why these rates are declining, create academic maps to guide students through their programs and increase the university’s recruitment efforts.

ISU also plans to develop its identity and culture as well as build stronger relationships with the community.

The Board of Education also hopes this meeting will lead to improvements on its decision-making.

“We saw the report of a research study that was done amongst all of our institutions across the state in an effort to provide a more system-like approach. So, we’re gonna have a discussion on what are those ways that we can be more efficient within our institutions,” said Debbie Critchfield, the president of the board.

Critchfield said that because the board encompasses both K-12 and public higher education, it can reduce costs and run more efficiently.

The state Board of Education will continue the meeting tomorrow at ISU at 8 a.m.

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