The Kentucky Department of Education announces that, “Terry Holliday, superintendent of the Iredell-Statesville school district in Statesville, North Carolina, has been selected as Kentucky’s fifth commissioner of education.”
Holliday brings some impressive accomplishments to the job. Under his tenure, his district won the prestigious Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award. These awards recognize companies, organizations, businesses and other entities that have shown long-term improvement in quality and productivity.
To earn that award – and many other accolades – Holliday closed achievement gaps and spurred marked improvement in graduation rates (both of which are badly needed in Kentucky!) and other student achievement measures.
I talked about Holliday with a newspaper staffer who serves the Iredell-Statesville school district area in North Carolina about a week ago. About the only complaints against Holliday seem to be from some teachers who claim Holliday made them work harder. This newspaper man will be sorry to see him leave.
Holliday brings some great skills to his new job.
As a North Carolina educator, he is intimately familiar with value added assessment programs. That is what we needed, but never got, from our now disbanded CATS assessments. As we rework CATS, Holliday’s background could be of inestimable value to that process.
As a data-oriented individual who even impressed the data hounds at Baldridge, Holliday understands issues we have pushed at the Bluegrass Institute for years.
This time, our Kentucky Board of Education might just have got it right. We look forward to meeting Dr. Holliday and watching what he can do for Kentucky.