KCTCS

Alix Mattingly

The Kentucky community college system reassigned its top attorney earlier this month to a newly created “special assistant” position soon after wrapping up a monthslong investigation of his office behavior.

J. Campbell Cantrill III will serve as “special assistant to the president for policy review and revision” until he retires next summer, according to a settlement reached with the Kentucky Community & Technical College System on June 1. He will continue to draw the $137,314 annual salary he received as general counsel.

Cantrill, who served as KCTCS’ legal chief since 2008, had been placed on administrative leave with pay and barred from the system’s headquarters in Versailles and its email system on Feb. 26. In a letter sent to him that day by KCTCS President Jay Box, Cantrill was told he was being investigated for possible violations of system policies, including those that cover harassment, ethical values and use of information technology.

The letter cited “multiple reports” of violations by Cantrill but did not provide any details. KCTCS hired an outside attorney, Keith Moorman of Frost Brown Todd in Lexington, to investigate the matter.

Alix Mattingly

The president of Kentucky’s community college system makes $375,000 annually, a paycheck that’s right on the money when compared with similar institutions, at least according to a school-funded consultant’s report.

Consultant Lyle Hanna briefed a few members of the Kentucky Community and Technical College System board of regents last week on his comprehensive review of President Jay Box’s pay. Hanna’s review, funded by KCTCS, found Box’s compensation is very close to the average of his peers:

“Amazingly,” Hanna said, “right on the target.”

In hitting that target, though, Hanna relied on flawed information, including a cherry-picked group of peers and data that doesn’t exist yet.

Alix Mattingly, WFPL News

News of the $815,741 paid last year to retired Kentucky Community & Technical College System President Michael McCall has drawn expressions of outrage from lawmakers, college employees, citizens and the state’s secretary of education.

Gov. Matt Bevin’s administration said Thursday it will conduct a comprehensive review of KCTCS, which announced the elimination of 506 jobs earlier this week. The review will be done by the Education and Workforce Development Cabinet under Secretary Hal Heiner and the state’s Council on Postsecondary Education.

As reported Thursday by WFPL’s Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting, McCall retired Jan. 15, 2015, but was given a consulting contract that paid him $300,965 till year-end. KCTCS also gave him $352,066 for 261 unused vacation days and a $124,249 deferred incentive payout.

As the Kentucky Community & Technical College System eliminates 506 jobs, it disclosed that it paid $815,741 last year to former president Michael McCall.

KCTCS Cuts More than 500 Jobs to Close Budget Gap

May 19, 2016
KCTCS

The Kentucky Community and Technical College System has eliminated more than 500 positions and suspended some college programs, all in an effort to close a $26 million gap in its budget.

KCTCS spokeswoman Mary Hemlepp tells local media that 505 positions have recently been eliminated system-wide. She says 191 of those positions were faculty and 315 were staff, but because many of the positions were vacant or were vacated through retirements, only 45 faculty and 125 staff were actually laid off.

Hemlepp says the college system's financial problems stemmed from seven years of state appropriation cuts and an additional 4.5 percent in the next biennium. Several years of declining enrollment also led to tuition shortfalls.

KCTCS President Jay Box announced earlier this month that next year's tuition is being increased by 6.1 percent.

KCTCS

Kentucky’s improving economy is driving steep declines in community college enrollment, but the head of the Kentucky Community and Technical College System says those schools are not losing their relevance.  In an interview with WKU Public Radio, Dr. Jay Box said community colleges remain key in building a stronger workforce which translates into a stronger middle class.

Box:  We are the primary provider of workforce education and training in all states and we realize the jobs that our graduates get are those middle class jobs, the jobs that are so important in our economy.

Autry:  You were recently appointed to a national community college board called Reclaiming America’s Middle Class.  One of its missions is to promote community colleges and the role they play in serving students, whether right out of high school or adult learners who perhaps are coming from jobs into the classroom.  Talk about some of the priorities of this national board.

KCTCS

The head of the Kentucky Community and Technical College System has been appointed to a new national board that advocates for the needs of community colleges. 

KCTCS President Jay Box says the board called “Reclaiming America’s Middle Class” promotes the value of community colleges to students, communities, and the economy. He says that’s something often not wellunderstood by policy makers.

"We are the primary provider of workforce education and training in all states, and we realize that the jobs our graduates get are those middle class jobs, the jobs that are so important in our economy," Box told WKU Public Radio.

The board has several priorities, including an expansion of Pell Grants for summer classes. Box says that would help students complete their education quicker and with less cost. 

The board is made up of leaders from the nation’s largest community college systems.  KCTCS has 16 schools and 70 campus locations.

KCTCS

Update at 4:12 p.m.:

A series of weekend events hosted by Kentucky churches aimed at connecting minority students with higher education information is being postponed because of the weather.

Kentucky Community and Technical College System and churches throughout the state were scheduled to host “Super Sunday” events, targeting African-American and Latino students. Events in Bardstown, Bowling Green, Elizabethtown, Henderson, Leitchfield, Owensboro, Somerset and several other cities  are being postponed to later dates.

You can see which Super Sunday events are impacted by the postponements here.

Original post:

The Kentucky Community and Technical College System is making a special effort this weekend to reach out to prospective minority students. 

The fifth annual “Super Sunday” will be held at churches across the state.  KCTCS President Jay Box says the recruitment initiative targets African-American and Latino students.

Upset that retired Kentucky Community and Technical College System President Michael McCall is taking a $324,000 consulting fee when the system has been running in the red, its professors and staff members are asking him to decline the money.

As the new — and paid — president emeritus of the Kentucky Community & Technical College System, Michael McCall will attend meetings, give advice, provide executive coaching, help hire new executives and help run a systemwide leadership academy now bearing his name.

Edwards Named Interim KCTCS chancellor

Dec 16, 2014

Longtime educator and administrator George Edwards will assume the role of interim chancellor for the Kentucky Community and Technical College System starting next month.

As the system-level chief academic officer, the chancellor provides leadership for academic affairs, workforce development, distance learning initiatives and professional development.

KCTCS President-elect Jay Box announced Edwards' selection as interim chancellor on Monday.

Edwards retired recently from Big Sandy Community and Technical College, where he served as president for 14 years. Edwards has 35 years of teaching and administrative experience at four community colleges in Kentucky and Virginia.

Edwards begins his interim stint as chancellor on Jan. 26.

KCTCS officials hope to name a new chancellor by April 1.

Box served as chancellor for five years and begins his new role as president on Jan. 16.

How Much Will The New KCTCS Boss Make? One Group Says Public Should Know Beforehand

Nov 24, 2014
KCTCS

The Kentucky Community & Technical College System expects to sign a contract next month with president-elect Jay Box. But Chairman P.G. Peeples won't say whether the new president will get the same generous pay package as predecessor Michael McCall.

With about $669,000 in annual pay, McCall is the highest paid administrator of his kind in the country. Jim Waters, president of the Bluegrass Institute, wants KCTCS to be more open about its negotiations.

"The lack of transparency in the hiring process here also should make taxpayers extremely wary about such a generous compensation package including Cadillac benefits for a person who is overseeing a system with dwindling enrollment and funding," said Waters.

Enrollment has dropped 15 percent in the last year and could decrease another 6 percent if preliminary numbers hold up. Tuition revenue is also down significantly.

KCTCS Chancellor Chosen To Head 16 College System

Nov 19, 2014
KCTCS

In January, the chancellor for the Kentucky Community and Technical College System will move into the presidency.  The KCTCS Board voted unanimously Wednesday to confirm Dr. Jay Box as successor to current President Michael McCall.

Dr. Box has more than three decades of experience in community college leadership.  He's been chancellor for KCTCS since 2009.  Box says his accomplishments include furthering student completion, enhancing transfer policies and dual credit initiatives.  The Texas native admits being an insider may bring more scrutiny. 

"People know me.  They know maybe some of the areas that I'm not strong in, but I think the board's decision shows that they see the strengths that I bring to this position and I think my strengths will help the system be able to move forward," said Box.

Box says he expects the number of Kentucky high school graduates to flatten out or even decline.  He anticipates an increase in older non-traditional students entering the KCTCS.

"Those students, more than others, have failed in the education system before and that's why they don't have their high school diploma and so once we can get them to get their GED and enter with us, we think we've got a chance to help that group to be successful," added Box.

KCTCS

The Kentucky Community and Technical College System is close to having a new leader. 

The Board of Regents met in special session Tuesday and recommended Dr. Jay Box as the next president. 

Dr. Box is the current KCTCS chancellor, a position he’s held since 2009.  The Texas native came to Kentucky in 2002 to serve as president of Hazard Community and Technical College.  During his time as chancellor, Dr. Box is credited with helping eliminate barriers for community college students transferring to the state’s public universities. 

“After an extensive national search we are pleased to have identified a candidate who matches the presidential profile developed in collaboration with our search consultant, search committee, board, faculty, staff and student representatives,” Board of Regents Chairman P.G. Peeples said in a news release. “Dr. Box has played a key role in shaping the learning opportunities KCTCS provides and he has demonstrated strong leadership and dedication to our students, faculty and staff.”

The KCTCS system is referring to Box as the preferred candidate.  A forum will be held in Versailles on November 18 for college presidents, faculty, staff, and students to meet Box.  The next day, the Board of Regents will review feedback and is expected to approve a final contract for Box.  

Dr. Box replaces Dr. Michael McCall as KCTCS president.

Tuition Going Up for KCTCS Students

Jun 16, 2014

Students at Kentucky's community and technical colleges are facing higher tuition costs the next two years. The Kentucky Community and Technical College System's Board of Regents approved a budget for the upcoming academic year that includes a nearly 2.1% tuition increase for in-state students.

The Board approved a $924.1 million budget for the state-wide system of 16 colleges and more than 70 campuses for the next year.

Board members approved higher in-state tuition rates for the next two academic years. For the next school year, tuition will go up from $144 per credit hour to $147. In-state tuition for the 2015-16 academic year will be $150 per credit hour.

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