Idaho schools chief Luna admits to missteps in education reform plan

Bill Roberts:

Nearly a year after voters trounced Tom Luna’s Students Come First proposals in a referendum, the state schools superintendent acknowledged he did not do enough to make the plan transparent or to involve Idahoans.
“Our plan under Students Come First was a legislative plan,” Luna said Monday in a meeting with the Idaho Statesman Editorial Board. “We had 105 (legislators) and one governor to convince.”
Voters saw it differently, and after lawmakers passed three sweeping laws that narrowed collective bargaining, instituted merit pay and would have put laptops in the hands of all Idaho high-schoolers, they knocked all three down last fall.
“What I learned … is that we should have been far more aware of a more broad discussion amongst the general public and not just focus on a strategy that would have legislative success,” Luna said.