Squabble over alleged union complicity in Louisville’s “academic genocide” kicks up a big notch

The latest shot in the “academic genocide” tiff between the Kentucky Department of Education and Jefferson County public school educators got fired in today’s Courier-Journal. Says the Courier, “Teachers union denies holding up low-performing Jefferson County schools.” Jefferson County Teachers Association (JCTA) president Brent McKim is challenging Kentucky Commissioner of Education Terry Holliday to come…

Want to contact your local school board member? Kentucky Enquirer says ‘good luck’

(Ditto for your school’s SBDM members) In a huge, multi-page article the Kentucky Enquirer reported yesterday about the difficulty that parents in Northern Kentucky and Southwest Ohio encounter when they try to contact their local school board members. Phyllis Sparks, a Boone County parent, made the general case: “Boards are always crying out loud that…

More evidence of teachers’ union interference with low-achieving school turn-arounds in Jefferson County

Over the weekend the Courier-Journal ran an article with more evidence of teachers’ union interference with the expensive effort to turn around some of Jefferson County Public Schools’ (JCPS) Persistently Low-Achieving Schools (PLA). After first pointing out that PLAs in a number of areas around the state are making progress, the Louisville paper then points…

School superintendent data to become much more transparent

In the aftermath of several shocking audits that found school superintendents in some systems such as the Dayton Independent School District improperly received significant and unauthorized extra payments well above any agreed to contract figures, the Kentucky Department of Education has announced it is creating an on line repository for every school superintendent’s contract, salary…

Widespread test cheating in Atlanta leads to teacher indictments

The test cheating scandals involving teachers and other school staff in the Atlanta school system have now progressed to the point where three-dozen school staffers have been indicted. Kentucky had its own test cheating scandal on the state-run ACT testing program in Perry County several years ago. Several staff members received suspensions on their teaching…

Union issues in Louisville have impeded reforms in low-achieving schools

The Courier-Journal reports that a letter from Kentucky Commissioner of Education Terry Holliday to the Jefferson County Public School System (JCPS) directly identifies confusion over union contract issues as a roadblock to making badly needed changes in the school district’s Persistently Low-Achieving Schools (PLAs). Holliday says that “perception issues” on the part of teachers in…