education

Flickr Creative Commons

Tennessee is not going to reach an ambitious educational goal set by the state in 2015, data released Wednesday shows. 

The state had hoped to outperform the national average by the end of the decade. But Nation's Report Card shows that student growth in the state has remained stagnant.

In 2015, the Tennessee Department of Education set a 5-year goal to move the state academically from the bottom half to the top half of all states on the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), the largest standardized test administered nationally by the federal government.

 


Creative Commons

School superintendents across Kentucky joined together Tuesday to ask the legislature for more overall education funding and support for teachers.

The Kentucky Association of School Superintendents organized joint press conferences across the state to lay out their priorities for the next legislative session in January. Local superintendents met at the Ohio Valley Educational Cooperative offices in Shelbyville to describe their needs.

 


Chas Sisk | WPLN

State officials say a group of embattled charter schools in Antioch should remain open — at least for now.

Knowledge Academies, which runs two middle schools and a high school, is appealing an order from Metro Nashville Public Schools to shut down by the end of the year. Local officials cite claims of fraud and poor academic performance.

 

But staffers at the state level say there's not enough evidence to shut it down, so they're instead recommending probation.

University of Louisville

The University of Kentucky and the University of Louisville will share a $2.3 million grant to financially support more doctoral students in special education, in an effort to address a statewide shortage of special education teachers.

The U.S. Department of Education will fund the grant to provide tuition and living expenses for 10 doctoral students at UK and U of L, with 5 scholars at each university’s college of education. The two institutions offer the only doctoral programs in special education in the state.

 


WKU

College graduation rates are rising in Kentucky despite declining enrollment at institutions of higher education. That means more students who start college in Kentucky are making it to graduation day with a bachelor’s degree within six years.

Colleges across Kentucky awarded more than 23,000 bachelor’s degrees last school year.  New data released by the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education show the 6-year graduation rate for bachelor’s degrees in Kentucky has risen by about 4 percentage points over the past three years.

 


WKU

Ground was broken Monday for a residential complex in Bowling Green that will provide living, working, and recreational space to adults on the autism spectrum.

The residential buildings for LifeWorks at WKU will be located on Adams Street, near the campus of Western Kentucky University. Existing apartment buildings are being renovated for the project, with six residents scheduled to move in next fall.

“At WKU, we work to transform the lives of our students and elevate our community,” President Timothy Caboni said. “Public-private partnerships, such as this, are incredibly important to our efforts in accomplishing our mission.”

Becca Schimmel

The former director for English Language Learning programs in Warren County said standardized tests aren’t appropriate for many refugees and immigrants, because there’s cultural bias inherent in the tests. 

Skip Cleavinger said one of the biggest challenges for refugee and immigrant students is that they’re expected to perform at the same level as their peers on standardized tests within a year of arriving at the school. 

“One of the primary things is that these standardized tests tend to use more difficult language than is necessary to measure math or reading ability.”


Creative Commons

A new study conducted by a University of Louisville researcher has found a link between racial disparities on student test scores and racial disparities in school discipline between black and white students. The findings could mean that any successful effort to reduce one gap will likely help narrow the other.

The fact that black and Hispanic students are suspended and disciplined at higher rates than white students is well-established by past research. And many schools show significant “achievement gaps” in which white students tend to score better on standardized tests than their black and Latino peers. Those patterns hold true in Jefferson County Public Schools too.

Pike Central High School

A high school in Eastern Kentucky is removing so-called prayer lockers from its hallways after receiving a complaint from a national organization that advocates for the separation of church and state.

Signs on the lockers at Pike Central High say students can slip in pieces of paper with confidential requests for other students to pray for them. The school’s art department and a student posted photos of two prayer lockers on Facebook. One of the posts says the locker is sponsored by the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. The post’s caption also thanks someone who appears to be a teacher at the school for giving students the idea for the prayer locker.

 


Flickr/Creative Commons/BES Photos

Kentucky arts teachers are asking lawmakers to require that all public schools provide visual and performing arts classes.

State law currently only requires high schools to provide art classes — one credit — though many local school districts have arts requirements for elementary and middle schools.

A group of arts educators called the Kentucky Coalition for Arts Education is pushing for the bill, called the Arts Education Equity Act, ahead of next year’s legislative session. A similar version of the bill was proposed but never received a hearing this year.

 


Rhonda J Miller

Calling for smaller class sizes and fewer standardized tests, Democrat Andy Beshear offered a public education plan Wednesday that he said sets him apart from his opponent in Kentucky’s governor’s race, incumbent Republican Gov. Matt Bevin.

Beshear said there’s no bigger contrast between the two candidates than their approach to education. The state attorney general’s plan also calls for expanding early childhood education, ending a teacher shortage and increasing mental health services for children.

The Democratic challenger vowed to not sign a budget bill unless it sufficiently funds education.

Fons Cervera

Boyle County student Brooklyn Rockhold and her mother and brother endured abuse from her biological father for years. This week, she testified in front of Kentucky legislators, urging them to pass legislation to require child abuse education in schools so that children like her will be able to identify when they are being abused and report it.

“As I’ve gotten older and become more aware of what child abuse is, I’ve realized that things he did to my brother and I were abusive,” Rockhold testified. “If the schools had this legislation back then, I would not have grown up thinking this thing was normal.”


WKU

Western Kentucky University wants to expand the number—and demographic—of students who take part in its Study Abroad program.

The school is trying to convince more students who are from low-income families or minority groups to study overseas.

Natasha Breu, a journalism major from Clarksville, Tennessee, is an example of the kind of student WKU wants to be a part of Study Abroad.


FleursAvenue | Flickr

The day report cards go home in backpacks is an important moment for students, who will show their families just how well things are going at school. But in an era of school accountability, students aren’t the only ones who receive grades. The Kentucky Department of Education will soon release its annual report cards that score individual public schools. And this year’s school report cards will include a new feature — a final grade.

Well, it’s not exactly a grade, like in neighboring Indiana where schools get an A to F score just like their students. In Kentucky, schools will receive one to five stars. Kentucky Commissioner of Education Wayne Lewis said this will improve the state’s school report cards, which in the past have offered lots of data about schools, but no final score.


Creative Commons

State officials have announced a new initiative that will allow recruits going through law enforcement basic training to earn an associate’s degree.

The free program, called Educating Heroes, is being launched by Kentucky’s Department of Criminal Justice Training (DOCJT). Police officers who graduate DOCJT’s basic training would earn 45 credit hours at Bluegrass Community and Technical College. Recruits would also have an opportunity to take 15 credit hours of online courses to complete the 60 total hours to earn an Applied Science associate’s degree. The program also applies to officers who already finished basic training. Nearly 300 recruits go through DOCJT’s basic training academy every year, per a news release. 

Pages