A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Kentucky Senate Republican Caucus elects Wilson to leadership as new majority whip

The Kentucky Senate Republican Caucus announced Friday that Sen. Mike Wilson, R-Bowling Green, has been chosen as the new Majority Whip. He replaces Sen. Jimmy Higdon, R-Lebanon, who was selected as the caucus designee to replace Sen. David Givens, R-Greensburg, as Senate President Pro Tempore, earlier this month. Givens stepped down from his Senate Leadership post in June, citing personal reasons. Sen....

Sweeping public education bill nears passage in legislature, faces final action on House floor

By Ryland Barton Kentucky Public Radio An omnibus bill that would overhaul the state’s education system and gradually remove Common Core standards from Kentucky classrooms is nearing final passage in the General Assembly. The bill would change the way students are tested, use teachers to create new education standards and replace school self-evaluations called program reviews. Sen. Mike Wilson is...

State Senate approves performance-based funding formula for postsecondary education

Postsecondary education funding would be guided by performance-based measures, such as the number of students receiving degrees, under legislation approved Wednesday by the Kentucky Senate. Supporters of the legislation say it will phase out a funding model that, instead of basing funding on educational success, bases it on how much a school received in a previous budget cycle. The goal of Senate Bill...

State Senate approves sweeping education reform bill; measure moves to House for consideration

The Kentucky Senate passed a measure Friday that could result in the rewriting of public school lesson plans and tests in favor of a locally-centric form of educating. After the approval of Senate Bill 1, dubbed the let the teacher teach act, Sen. Mike Wilson, R-Bowling Green, hailed the moment as the day in which Kentucky set a successful course for its public school curriculum. “Our No. 1 resource...

SCA expansion at Bowling Green Personal Care plant will net 20 jobs on $24 million investment

SCA, a global hygiene and forest products provider, will increase its production and product diversity in Bowling Green with a nearly $24 million investment expected to create 20 jobs, Gov. Matt Bevin announced Thursday. “I’m grateful that SCA, an award-winning member of the state’s manufacturing sector, will increase its presence in Bowling Green. The fact that SCA chose to invest and grow its...

Commentary: Senate Bill 1 really about giving more control schools, state and teachers

By Sen. Mike Wilson Special to KyForward Based on consistent messages from Kentucky public school educators, this is not a time to halt or apply the brakes on adopting Senate Bill 1, but a time to step on the accelerator. Since 2009, political posturing, artificial accountability, and bureaucratic burdens have “halted” practitioners long enough. First, SB 1 attempts to reduce political influences...

Legislative Briefs: Senate passes education standards measure; midwives bill clears committee

A bill that would overhaul education and accountability standards in public schools passed the state Senate by a 25-12 vote Wednesday. The measure, designated Senate Bill 1, outlines a process to review, and possibly change, what students are taught – and how they’re tested – in key subjects such as English, mathematics, science and social studies. Sen. Mike Wilson, R-Bowling Green, who introduced...

With change in the wind, what does future hold for education? Five key issues discussed

  By John Gregory Special to KyForward   In the next year, Kentucky will have a new governor, a new education commissioner, and a new biennial budget – each of which could have a substantial impact of the state’s public schools.   Given these upcoming changes, KET’s Kentucky Tonight explored five key issues facing education in the commonwealth. The guests for the conversation...

Kentucky Senate unanimously approves bill
to address state’s exploding heroin epidemic

Sen. Mike Wilson, R-Bowling Green (right), congratulates Sen. Christian McDaniel, R-Taylor Mill, after the Kentucky Senate unanimously approved an anti-heroin bill McDaniel sponsored. (Photo from LRC Public Information)   Saying they’ve heard the call to fix Kentucky’s exploding heroin epidemic, state Senate members passed a bill without opposition that would provide more treatment for abusers...

Legislature’s 2014 session comes to an end; most new laws will go into effect in 90 days

Sen. Gerald Neal, D-Louisville, confers with Senate Majority Floor Leader Damon Thayer, R-Georgetown (right), in the Kentucky Senate as Sen. Mike Wilson, R-Bowling Green, looks on.   The Kentucky General Assembly’s 2014 regular session ended last night, capping off a session in which lawmakers approved the state’s next two-year budget and measures that will impact people throughout the state.   Since...

LRC’s Capitol Notes: School safety, DNA
bills among several that advance on busy day

By Scott Payton Special to KyForward   School safety legislation approved by Senate   Kentucky school districts would be required to maintain emergency management plans under a bill unanimously passed by the Senate Tuesday.   Based on recommendations from the Kentucky Center on School Safety, Senate Bill 8, sponsored by Sen. Mike Wilson, R-Bowling Green, would require school administrators...