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The Bottom Line: Kentucky Chamber discusses education progress made by state

By Jacqueline Pitts, The Bottom Line

In a meeting of the Subcommittee on Elementary and Secondary Education Monday morning, Kentucky Chamber President and CEO Dave Adkisson testified on the progress made by Kentucky in education and what still needs to be done while discussing a new report from the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce and the Prichard Committee for Academic Excellence.

As Adkisson explained, A Citizen’s Guide to Kentucky Education: Reform, Progress, Continuing Challenges looks at the education landscape that preceded the enactment of the landmark legislation that redefined the way education was delivered and financed in Kentucky. It also addresses changes in postsecondary education prompted by the Postsecondary Education Reform Act of 1997.

Members of the committee all noted the important role that Kentucky’s business community has played in the reforms that have helped moved education forward in the state and many on the committee thanked the Chamber and the Prichard Committee for their dedication to these issues.

In their presentations, Adkisson and Prichard Committee Executive Director Brigitte Blom Ramsey discussed the key points of the report including the major indicators of progress since education reforms were passed in the 1990’s and noted that Kentucky has moved from the very bottom of many education rankings at that time to now being in the middle or above when compared to other states on a number of indicators.

Looking ahead, Adkisson and Ramsey stated that the report stresses the need to continue working in all areas of education to ensure progress but also noted several focus areas that warrant greater attention in the near future:

• Career and technical education

• Closing achievement gaps between groups of students

• Teacher and administrator effectiveness

• Alternative paths to graduation that lead to postsecondary success in college and career

Watch some testimony from the Subcommittee on Elementary and Secondary Education meeting here:

For more state government news go to the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce’s The Bottom Line blog.