Did Kentucky education make great gains in the 1990s?
It was my pleasure to be a part of the always interesting Kentucky Tonight show with Renee Shaw on December 16, 2019. There was a lot to discuss with the upcoming legislative session pending and a new, and controversially reconstituted, state board of education as part of the agenda.
One of the big points I got to make was regardless of anything else, we need to get Kentucky’s policy makers on line with what is happening in education in the state of Mississippi. In a huge shocker, which I have already blogged about here and here, that state surpassed Kentucky for both black and white student scores on the 2019 National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) in math and in reading. It is a major surprise for a state that used to be able to say “Thank goodness for Mississippi” because that was about the only state Kentucky’s education system pretty consistently outperformed.
But, while Mississippi was discussed at some length during the Kentucky Tonight show, I’ve already covered the situation pretty well, so let’s look at a comment about something else. This was made by the Prichard Committee’s Brigit Ramsey, who shared the stage last night.
Around 28 minutes into the broadcast, Ms. Ramsey indicated that Kentucky’s education system had made great progress back during the 1990s. Really?
To explore this, I looked at the NAEP trend lines for Kentucky’s white and black students during the 1990s. Exactly what progress (if any) was made for Grade 4 and Grade 8 math and Grade 4 reading (the only NAEP results that stretch back to the early 1990s)? Click the “Read more” link to find out.