Counseling Programs to get Funding Boost?

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — A House panel is considering a plan to spend $2.5 million to support school counselors and lay out specific guidelines for their job descriptions.

The House Education Committee introduced the bill Thursday.

Marilyn Whitney, education liaison for Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter, says counselors often get sidetracked by having to substitute teach or maintain records.

According to the bill, counselors should spend their time helping students choose academic courses and work with students with disciplinary problems.

Rep. Ryan Kerby from New Plymouth, a former school superintendent, says the increased pressure on students to go to college means counselors’ workloads are growing.

The bill stems from a recommendation from a governor’s task force on improving education in 2013.

State budget writers would need to approve the funding.