FRANKFORT, Ky. — The Kentucky Board of Education (KBE) named Jason Reeves, dean of educational studies and professor of education at Union College in Barbourville, as the recipient of the second annual David Karem Award during its regular meeting today in Frankfort.
The award honoring former KBE member and state legislator David Karem is given annually to state policymakers, education leaders or citizens who have contributed to the improvement of education through venues such as national commissions, task forces or other significant boards and organizations. Recipients demonstrate outstanding leadership and impact on education policy and the educational system and exhibit a commitment to work collaboratively with different stakeholders.
“Dr. Reeves is a valued member of the state and national teacher education preparation communities. His work in educator preparation has helped ensure that postsecondary programs are producing quality teachers for Kentucky’s classrooms,” said Hal Heiner, chairman of the Kentucky Board of Education. “In addition, his volunteer service in support of P-12 education speaks volumes about his dedication to both teachers and learners.”
Reeves is a respected member of the state and national teacher education preparation communities. As a member of the Kentucky Education Professional Standards Board (EPSB) Board of Examiners, he was a catalyst in helping Kentucky become a national partner with the former National Council of Accreditation for Teacher Education (NCATE).
He was selected in 2013 to receive training by the NCATE as a national reviewer of postsecondary teacher preparation programs, and he is a trained program reviewer for its successor, the Council of Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP). He also served on the partnership development agreement committee that created the current agreement between EPSB and CAEP for nationally approved standards for educator preparation within the 25 educator preparation programs in Kentucky.
Reeves has served on the education and retraining working group for Shaping Our Appalachian Region (SOAR), where he hosted listening sessions at Union College to collect community input on the educational needs of the region as a means of advancing new and innovative employment opportunities. He also has served as a board member for the Kentucky Center for Rural Development’s Forward in the Fifth program, and he is a member of the board of education for Barbourville Independent schools. He has volunteered with numerous community organizations and activities, most of them related to education.
“Having known Dr. Reeves for over a decade, I have seen the legacy of impact he has made in the lives of many through countless hours of volunteer service on state and national educational boards and through selfless dedication as a community volunteer in advancing P-12 education for all learners,” Mary Alice Lay, a retired associate professor of education at Union College, said in her nomination of Reeves. “While certainly deserving of this award, Dr. Reeves’ nature is to show gratitude through a reserved, yet thoughtful kindness as he continues his devotion to P-16 education. This is the ultimate characteristic of someone who is truly invested in making the lives of Kentucky children and their communities better: a disposition of selfless commitment.”
Reeves has served as dean of educational studies at Union College since 2007. He supervises 30 full-time and adjunct faculty members for undergraduate and graduate education programs in six specialization areas.
The award’s namesake, David Karem, sat on the Kentucky Board of Education from 2009 to 2016. He served Kentucky for 33 years in the Kentucky State Senate and was chair of the Senate Education Committee. During his tenure in the Kentucky General Assembly, Karem championed the passage of the Kentucky Education Reform Act and led the efforts for the 4 percent school tax levy by districts. His efforts were crucial in shaping state-level education policy that ensures Kentucky’s children can compete in today’s global economy.