Education

An effort by Governor Steve Beshear to expand preschool services in the commonwealth did not make it into the final state budget.

Beshear put a $15 million appropriation for preschool in his budget proposal. The House cut that figure in half and funded other education programs with what was left. The Senate struck all the money, saying it wouldn't be right to expand some programs while slashing others.

And after days of budget talks, the Senate won the argument.

Dr. Ramon Zabriskie of the School of Management at Brigham Young University will be on the WKU campus on April 3rd to present this year's Boyd-Lubker Visiting Scholars Program Lecture. Dr. Zabriskie has done extensive research on the impact recreation can have on groups ranging from families to prison populations.

University of Missouri

A former Vice-President for University Advancement at WKU will head development efforts at the University of Missouri. Tom Hiles, who established several fund-raising records at WKU between 1998 and 2010, has been named the Vice-Chancellor for Development at the Columbia, Missouri based institution. 

A statewide meeting that will focus on ways to increase college completion rates will draw educators and administrators from across Kentucky next week. Higher education faculty and staff from public and private institutions will meet in Louisville to explore ways to close achievement gaps.

An attempt to piggyback charter school legislation on another bill has likely killed two plans for education reform in Kentucky. The state Senate Education committee Thursday added language legalizing charter schools to a charter alternative plan sponsored by Representative Carl Rollins, who chairs the House Education Committee. Charter supporters hoped Rollins would allow the amendment in order to see his alternative become law, but it's unlikely the plan will work.

Kentucky lawmakers are trying again to raise the state's dropout age. Currently, students can drop out of school at 16 years old with parents' permission. But lawmakers and Governor Steve Beshear have pushed to raise the dropout age to 18, regardless of parental consent.

Prichard Committee for Academic Excellence

Citizens in ten communities across Kentucky will be participating Tuesday evening  in discussion groups and viewing a ninety minute movie titled, "American Teacher." The activity is sponsored by a number of advocacy groups, including the Kentucky Association for School Superintendents, the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce, the Kentucky School Boards Association, and the Prichard Committee for Academic Excellence. Organizers say they hope to spur discussion about the importance of placing and retaining excellent teachers in the classroom.

A proposal to create a scholarship fund for far eastern Kentucky college students could be in jeopardy. The Appalachian scholarship fund was intended as a compromise, after a measure to move the University of Pikeville into the state system couldn’t garner enough support. In the House’s version of the budget, lawmakers funded the scholarships with coal severance tax money.

A free exhibit called "Honoring our History Tour" will be on display at Slugger Field in Louisville Monday, and the  Kentucky Department of Veterans Affairs says donations will be accepted. According to Kentucky Department of Veterans Affairs Commissioner Ken Lucas, half of all donations collected at the site will go to the veterans cemetary in Radcliff.

LRC

Refugees would be allowed to remain in Kentucky high schools past their 21st birthday under a measure that has cleared the Kentucky House of Representatives. House Bill 183 is sponsored by Bowling Green Democrat Jody Richards, who says the proposal is intended to help refugees who have come to the United States to escape persecution in other countries.

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