Jefferson County shows why simplistic analysis of scores doesn’t always work

To support a radio interview today with Bluegrass Institute’s President, Jim Waters, on WLLV in Louisville, I assembled some of the latest education statistics for Jefferson County (JeffCo) and Kentucky. The table below shows the most recently released score and graduation rate information from the Kentucky Department of Education’s web site, including the “Open House”…

Politics as usual in Louisville’s school board elections

WFPL reports “Teachers Union Could Spend Big on JCPS Board Endorsements.” What an understatement. In past years the Jefferson County Teachers Association (JCTA) made “independent expenditures” of over $100,000 a piece in support of individual candidates in the county’s school board races. There is nothing illegal in this, but such overwhelming financial support makes it…

Kentucky school superintendent gets it: Improving education comes first in the fight on poverty

Some educators have the situation completely backwards. They think we will never improve education until we first eradicate poverty. While that attitude provides a convenient excuse for low educational performance, I think those educators have this exactly backwards. Fortunately, a lot of other educators – those who are interested in performance, not excuses – agree…

Beware editorial blindness

Sometimes, an editor in Kentucky really misses the message. A great case in point is the recent Messenger-Inquirer (Owensboro) article, “ACT score gains encouraging” (subscription). The title of the article is OK; the gains Kentucky recently experienced on ACT college entrance test scores are encouraging. However, Kentucky still has a VERY long way to go,…