This year's high school graduates in both states fell short when measured against national results for ACT college readiness benchmarks but Kentucky is making improvements.
In English, reading, mathematics and science combined, 18% of both Kentucky's and Tennessee's classes of 2013 achieved college readiness compared with 26% nationally. The results were released Wednesday in the ACT's yearly report, "The Condition of College & Career Readiness 2013."
Kentucky Education Commissioner Terry Holliday said students and teachers have made progress during the past five years.
The broadest difference was in math, where 30% of Kentucky graduates met college readiness marks, compared with 44% throughout the U.S. In science, statewide 28% met the mark, while 36% were on target nationally. 29% of Tennessee graduates met the college readiness marks in math with 27% achieving the science standard.
Studies suggest reading to children early in their development enhances their vocabulary, helps them identify letters and become better readers. Yet, less than half of U.S. children are read to on a daily basis.
To counteract that problem, reading is being doctor-prescribed in certain parts of the commonwealth, like Muhlenberg County.
Dr. Billie Galyen sees about 6,000 kids a year at her pediatric clinic in Greenville.
Five-year-old Brady and three-year-old Noah are there for check-ups. Every child six months to five years old leaves the office with a new book to take home and a prescription to read.
A group of Franklin-Simpson High School students got a welcome surprise Friday morning.
Those students are taking dual-credit classes at the Southcentral Kentucky Community and Techical College campus in Franklin and were on campus Friday for their fall semester orientation. They also learned that they won't have to pay any tuition for the upcoming academic year.
Those tuition costs are being covered by the Simpson County On-Track Scholarship Fund.
SKYCTC Franklin-Simpson Center Director James McCaslin says the scholarship program is a combined effort of five groups.
"They've each contributed a certain amount of money for this particular year, but our anticipation is that once we show the results of it, that this time next year they'll be willing to put up another set amount of money," said McCaslin.
State officials are celebrating in the Capitol with an event to recognize 120 Kentucky school districts that have voted to raise the dropout age to 18.
Gov. Steve Beshear, first lady Jane Beshear, Education Commissioner Terry Holliday and Lawrence County High School senior Harley Ratliff are holding a news conference Thursday afternoon to mark the achievement.
A new law that went into effect this summer increases the dropout age statewide from 16 to 18 after 55 percent of the state's 173 school districts signed on.
The higher dropout age becomes a statewide standard by 2017.
The Beshears made increasing the dropout age a top priority after taking office in 2007.
The Kentucky Board of Education will consider final recommendations by the state’s education department this week on new science standards. Education officials received thousands of public comments on the standards, some critical of new teachings of evolution and climate change.
The board chair doesn’t expect to change the standards in response to those who question the theories.
The new standards are part of Kentucky’s 2009 education reforms. They will update what students will be expected to learn in science….and that includes teaching climate change and evolution.
Several residents voiced their opposition to these topics last month, saying the standards are based on lies. Educators say the standards are based on scientific research and will allow Kentucky’s education system to remain competitive with other states.
Indiana's top lawmakers are creating a task force to review the state's "A-F" school grading system following the revelation former state schools superintendent Tony Bennett changed the grading formula for a Republican donor's charter school.
Republican Senate President Pro Tem David Long and Republican House Speaker Brian Bosma announced Friday the creation of an independent task force to review the school grading system. Bennett resigned from his job as Florida's schools chief Thursday after emails obtained by The Associated Press were published.
Those emails detailed his efforts to change the school grading formula for the Christel House charter school in Indianapolis.
Long said Tuesday he would seek an independent audit of the grading system. Democratic state schools superintendent Glenda Ritz says her office is conducting an internal review.
Some early results released from a Vanderbilt University study on the impact of pre-K education show a mixed bag. The findings so far indicate that Tennessee children who make big gains in math, reading, and language by attending pre-kindergarten don’t stay ahead of their peers for long.
But the research also shows those same children can learn other behaviors that benefit them down the road.
The Tennessean reports that Vanderbilt University researchers are counseling patience regarding the unprecedented study, which follows 3,000 Tennessee children from age 4 through third grade, through the year 2015.
One early takeaway from the study: students who attend preschool are promoted from kindergarten to first grade at twice the rate of those who don’t, and have higher first grade attendance. Researchers are wondering whether those kinds of achievements are actually better predictors of long-term academic success, as opposed to focusing solely on a child’s early academic abilities.
Kentucky high school seniors will soon be able to send electronic transcripts to state colleges and universities, as well as some out of state schools, using the free eTranscript process.
Lieutenant Governor Jerry Abramson made the announcement Tuesday.
“The statewide adoption of electronic transcripts will streamline the college admissions process, in some cases allowing students to complete the process totally online,” said Abramson. “The eTranscript system will be easy for our students to use, and it will reduce costs and save time for all parties.”
Jefferson County will be the first to make the system available districtwide. By the end of the year, Kentucky eTranscript should be available to students in public and private high schools across the state.
Students will also be able to upload documents such as letters of recommendation for paperless delivery.
WKU Public Radio's interview with Richard Trollinger, Vice President for College Relations at Centre College
When it comes to financial contributions, there are major gifts--and then there's what happened Tuesday at Centre College.
The private undergraduate school in Danville has announced the largest gift ever given to a liberal arts school in the U.S, and the largest donation ever given to a Kentucky college or university.
The A. Eugene Brockman Charitable Trust is giving Centre $250 million in stock to create the Brockman Scholars Program in Leadership and Entrepreneurship. Forty scholarships will be awarded each year starting in the fall of 2014.
Brockman's son, Bob, attended Centre before finishing his degree at another school.
The Chronicle of Higher Education reports the donation ranks among the 20 largest gifts ever given to a U.S. college or university.
Brockman Scholars will pursue degrees in several science-related fields, such as behavioral neuroscience, biology, chemistry, computer science, math, and psychology.