A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

New online system completes background checks faster for child care providers, schools

A new online system will help child care providers and schools process staff background checks faster, expediting the process while ensuring the safety of Kentucky’s children. The Kentucky Department for Community Based Services (DCBS) has launched its Child Abuse/Neglect (CAN) Payment and Verification online portal, which allows users to request a check of the CAN Registry electronically instead...

COVID-19 cases continue to rise in Kentucky; Beshear talks testing, politics, schools, health

By Melissa Patrick Kentucky Health News The number of new, daily coronavirus cases in Kentucky continues to creep up, hitting a seven-day high of 295 on Thursday. Gov. Andy Beshear called the number “pretty high… elevated from where we were going for more than a week,” but said it is “a little too early” to say the trend has reversed and is on an upward trajectory. “Again,...

KDE releases initial guidance on how to restart schools for 2020-21 year amid pandemic

The Kentucky Department of Education has released a new guidance document about questions schools and districts should consider when they are making plans for how to restart school for the 2020-21 academic year. The document – “COVID-19 Considerations for Reopening Schools, Initial Guidance for Schools and Districts” – guides school leaders through a variety of questions to consider about: •How...

Robert Kingsolver: Glories of capitalism on ‘Common Ground’ difficult to find for most Kentuckians

Rob and Lauren Hudson have been regular contributors to these pages with their “Letters of Common Ground” proclaiming the glories of capitalism. You have to wonder where, exactly, are they finding this “common ground?” Apparently it lies within the gated communities of the affluent, because most Kentuckians have never set foot on the lush green landscape that unrestricted capitalism...

Kevin Brown: Envisioning what’s next for education is difficult, but state’s schools, districts have a plan

With all that has happened in the closing weeks of this school year, you may not want to think about what the next school year will look like for your children just yet. That’s certainly understandable given that we have all been working so hard to complete this year under extraordinary circumstances brought about by the COVID-19 emergency. However, your schools and districts have to plan for the...

John Schaaf: McConnell’s talk of state bankruptcy is strange, and his timing of announcement is peculiar

In a strange move, Sen. Mitch McConnell recently announced he favors “allowing states to use the bankruptcy route,” so he’s pushing an idea that would require states to raise taxes and sell off assets such as the Kentucky State Parks. Sen. McConnell’s announcement is peculiar because of its timing and because of the chaos that would result if a state declared it could not pay its bills. Luckily,...

Kentucky receives approval to provide increased access to Medicaid health services for students

The Cabinet for Health and Family Services (CHFS) has received final approval for a Medicaid state plan amendment that will expand health services in schools. The change to Medicaid will be phased in during the current school year, and approval for direct services reimbursements to school districts is retroactive to Aug. 1. “Approval of this amendment is a game-changer,” said CHFS Secretary Adam...

Rae Smith presented with 2019 GED Administrator of the Year Award during national conference

Kentucky Skills U, an agency within the Education and Workforce Development Cabinet, has announced that Rae Smith was named the 2019 GED Administrator of the Year during the GED Testing Service Annual Conference July 24-26 in Chicago. The GED Administrator of the Year recognizes administrators that have demonstrated an unwavering commitment to the advancement of the GED test program. Each year the...

Five individuals, four organizations to receive 2018-19 Governor’s Award for the Arts Sept. 10

Five Kentuckians and four Kentucky organizations will receive the state’s top honors in the arts on Sept. 10 in Frankfort when Gov. Matt Bevin presents the 2018-19 Governor’s Awards in the Arts. The Governor’s Awards in the Arts recognize individuals and organizations making extraordinary and significant contributions to the arts in Kentucky. Awards go to artists, arts organizations, art critics,...

BBB Trends: School dazed? Watch for identity theft; share information only on need-to-know basis

By Sandra Guile Better Business Bureau In just a few short weeks, school bells will ring announcing the start of another school year. For many parents, that means forms, forms, and more forms -— applications for scholarships, sports teams, scouts and the list goes on.  Need-To-Know Basis As you get started, consider how much of your child’s information you’re sharing and how to protect it. You...

Kentucky biodiversity book now available in public schools, now in second printing

After selling out the first printing of its book, “Kentucky’s Natural Heritage, an Illustrated Guide to Biodiversity,” the Kentucky State Nature Preserves Commission today announced that a second printing will place the book in every middle, high school, college and university library in the Commonwealth. The reprint of the coffee table book and gift to Kentucky’s school libraries was made...

Kentucky's lowest-performing schools are making gains, still room for improvement

Kentucky’s lowest-performing schools continue to make progress on increasing student achievement, according to a report presented to the Kentucky Board of Education at its meeting today.   Based on 2013-14 Unbridled Learning Assessment and Accountability System results, of the 39 Priority or Persistently Low-Achieving Schools (those identified as being in the bottom 5 percent of schools in the...

Poetry Out Loud competition gives students creative outlet and chance to win trip to D.C.

  Poetry Out Loud, a poetry recitation contest, celebrates its 10th year in Kentucky schools in 2015.   The contest starts at the classroom level. Winners advance to schoolwide competition, then to the state competition, Feb. 19 at the Grand Theatre in Frankfort. Fifteen Kentucky schools, including three that are new to the Poetry Out Loud program, will compete for the chance to represent...

Adopt-a-Highway poster contest sparks awareness and creativity from students

1st place poster in the 15-17 age category by Nicole Giesbers from Williamstown Independent Schools, Grant County (Photo provided)   Most of them may not be able to drive yet, but students ages 6 to 17 showed that they care about the highways across the state.   Students from Williamstown Independent Schools in Grant County, Drakes Creek Middle School in Warren County, Immaculate Heart of...

Versailles school's 'Writing on the Walls' project a 'community celebration of literacy'

‘The Writing on the Walls’ project at Simmons Elementary School in Versailles is aimed at showing students the importance of writing in all facets of life. (Graphic from Wikimedia Commons)   By Erin Grigson KyForward Intern   While some people may see “The Writing on the Walls” as a bad omen, at Simmons Elementary School in Versailles, it means preparing students for...