Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway is again warning of a scam. But this time, it’s school districts, not individual consumers who are being targeted.
Conway says a Kentucky school and at least one in Indiana are among several nationwide that have received book invoices for hundreds of dollars from a company calling itself “Scholastic School Supply”. A press release from the Kentucky attorney general's office indicates the company in question should not be confused with Scholastic, Inc. an established company that calls the scammers actions a “fraudulent” use of its name and trademark.
Since August, the Better Business Bureau says it has received 90 complaints from 27 states related to the scam.
Kentucky’s Education Commissioner Terry Holliday says it’s unfortunate that schools “now have to contend with scam artists who seek to undermine their work and the progress of Kentucky’s children.”
Kentucky education officials want to tweak the state's English and math standards and they want help doing it.
Officials unveiled a website on Monday where people can view the state's hundreds of English and math education standards. People can rewrite the standards or they can click a green thumbs-up icon, similar to Facebook's "like" button.
State Education Commissioner Terry Holliday said the process is not a referendum on the standards and noted the department would ignore complaints that don't contain suggestions for improving the standards.
Kentucky was the first in the nation to adopt the English and math standards, which were modeled after the Common Core standards that have since become a flashpoint in national politics.
According to new data on state assessments, Kentucky students are making progress in basic subjects like reading and math. In the second year of the Unbridled Learning testing system, overall student performance showed improvement from 2012.
“The statewide data clearly show we are making progress, though slower than we would like,” said Kentucky Education Commissioner Terry Holliday in a news release. “We’ve raised expectations and aligned them with what students need to be successful; we are moving in the right direction toward the goal of providing a world-class education for every Kentucky student and ensuring all children graduate college/career-ready,” he said.
Here are some of the scores within the WKU Public Radio listening area.
Bowling Green city schools rank Proficient with an overall district total of 60.0 out of 100 while Warren County schools are classified as Needing Improvement with a total score of 58.3
The Elizabethtown Independent school district gets the top ranking of Distinguished at 64.3 as the overall score while Hardin County schools come in at Proficient with a total ranking of 58.4.
Somerset Independent has an overall score 61.2, making the district Proficient while Pulaski County schools receive the top score of Distinguished at 64.9.
Another Distinguished school system is Daviess County with a district score of 63.9, while Owensboro city schools are ranked as Needing Improvement with a total ranking of 54.1.
You can see how every school system in the state fares, as well as scores for individual schools by clicking here.
Education Commissioner Terry Holliday says while Kentucky students improved their overall test results from last school year, the state still needs to do a better job with math.
The education department released its annual data measuring individual school and district success Friday. This is the first year Kentucky has comparable results since the state underwent education reforms and changed its accountability system last year.
Kentucky met its annual goals as a state, but over 40 percent of schools fell short. Holliday says part of the problem is math scores and success at the middle school level.
“While we did make improvement we would have liked to have seen it go a little bit faster and so we’ve gone back in and we’re going to be working really hard with schools and districts over the next school year to support them," said the education commissioner.
Holliday says Kentucky’s 86 percent graduation rate was among the top nationwide, but it should be paired with the fact that just 55 percent of students who graduate are prepared for college or career.
Kentucky Education Commissioner Terry Holliday is calling the next legislative session a “make or break year” for the state’s public school system.
“I think we’ve hit the wall for increasing student performance and without some reinvestment in public education I think kids are going to lose out.”
Holliday is asking state lawmakers to restore per student funding to their 2009 levels during biennium budget discussions next year. He also says state grant funding needs to be restored. That will mean committing nearly $270 million dollars more to education for the next two years.
Holliday says the General Assembly can accomplish this through tax reforms and approving expanded gaming, two issues that have not made headway in the recent past.
Education will be competing with state pension and healthcare issues among the other state agencies that have seen cuts to their budgets.
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 Commissioner of Education in Kentucky has been diagnosed with a neurological voice disorder that’s limiting his ability to talk normally. Dr. Terry Holliday started noticing symptoms last September, and by December his voice had dramatically deteriorated.
After ruling out cancer, Holliday made appointments with several specialists.
“I’ve been diagnosed with spasmodic dysphonia, which is basically your vocal cords freeze up," Holliday said.
A cause of the condition is unknown but fortunately it’s not life-threatening. Spasmodic dysphonia is the same disorder that affects public radio host Diane Rehm.
The State Board of Education will meet in special session Wednesday to consider taking over management of a southeast Kentucky school system. The Monticello Independent school district has waived its right to appeal a state takeover. The problems plaguing Monticello schools are not academic.
A financial analysis by the Kentucky Department of Education finds enrollment is declining while expenditures remain too high for the size of the district.
A revenue forecast dated January 7 of this year estimates the general fund for Monticello will end the current school year with a negative balance of more than a million dollars. Additionally, the state last month had to advance over $700,000 to Monticello to continue operating and make payroll.
Kentucky is about to officially start a nonprofit education foundation modeled after one in Colorado and aimed at attracting funding for innovative school programs. State Education Commissioner Terry Holliday on Wednesday will deliver paperwork to the secretary of state's office incorporating the new Fund for Transforming Education.
Just one in four children in the state is prepared for kindergarten, according to preliminary data presented to the Kentucky Board of Education on Tuesday. The preliminary data is showing that 24 percent to 28 percent of children are considered prepared for kindergarten, said Karen Dodd, director of strategic planning for the education department.