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Ybarra names 13 students to her advisory council


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Thirteen public school students from across Idaho have been named to the Student Advisory Council. The group will meet quarterly to give input to State Superintendent of Public Instruction Sherri Ybarra and others in the State Department of Education.

“Their perspective and insights on Idaho’s public education experience are invaluable, especially as we work to recover from the pandemic’s impacts on schools,” Ybarra said in a news release sent out on Wednesday.

While the group was originally planned to consist of 12 members, Ybarra said it was too hard to choose between the 58 applicants. She said some of students’ priorities included school funding, eliminating cliques in schools, mental and emotional health, social issues and meeting the needs of students with disabilities.

The first meeting of the council will be on Sept. 20 in Boise. Attendance will be limited to the advisory council members, their parents/guardians, Ybarra and other SDE staff members.

None of the 13 members represent a charter school.

Ybarra was looking for students of a variety of ages and “with different backgrounds, cultures, interests, school sizes and parts of Idaho.” According to SDE spokesperson Kris Rodine, 34 of the 58 applications came from outside Ada and Canyon counties.

The selections were made by Ybarra, with recommendations coming from a screening committee.

The students who have been named to the advisory council are:

  • Ocie Atagi, sixth grade, New Plymouth Middle School, New Plymouth School District
  • Hayden Barbre, eighth grade, Wood River Middle School, Blaine County School District
  • Mila Gabiola, 10th grade, Highland High School, Pocatello School District
  • Michael Gusinow, 11th grade, Renaissance High School, West Ada School District
  • Joselyn Gutierrez, 12th grade, Caldwell High School, Caldwell School District
  • Audrey Harmon, 9th grade, Bonneville High School, Bonneville School District
  • Bridget McNamee, fourth grade, Dalton Elementary School, Coeur d’Alene School District
  • Grady Noble, seventh grade, North Junior High, Boise School District
  • Emma Paddlety, ninth grade, Lapwai Middle/High School, Lapwai School District
  • Caleb Pebley, 11th grade, Hillcrest High School, Bonneville School District
  • Adeline Perry, fifth grade, Valley View Elementary School, Boise School District
  • Zayan Virani, 10th grade, Timberline High School, Boise School District
  • Brylee Williams, 12th grade, Weiser High School, Weiser School District

Originally posted on on September 8, 2021 names 13 students to her advisory council/