Kentucky Enquirer’s Common Core State Standards series reveals more than you think

The Kentucky Enquirer launched a week long report series on the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) today. And, the very first article wasted no time grabbing my attention. For starters, the article has some notable technical errors about when CCSS and the related tests started in Kentucky (More on that later). However, the really big…

Op-Ed: Major reforms needed to repair Kentucky’s broken pension system

The following is an op-ed I submitted for publication in the Lexington Herald-Leader. It was printed on Monday April 15, 2012. You can view the letter on the paper’s website here. If Kentucky’s public pension system was a private-sector business, it would have been forced to close its doors many years ago. Unfortunately, the pension…

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…

Private organizations eligible for public pensions?

Kentucky taxpayer money is being wasted Why are private-sector workers receiving public pensions? Imagine a world in which the employees of nonpublic entities are not allowed to be a part of the state’s public pension system. In this world, taxpayers are not footing the retirement package bill for private organizations’ workforce. Wait, you didn’t know…

BIPPS on WVLK’s ‘Kruser and Krew’

Today at 1 p.m., Bluegrass Institute President Jim Waters will be discussing the Bluegrass Institute’s new pension report on WVLK’s ‘Kruser and Krew.’ Be sure totune in and hear proposed free-market solutions that include making Kentucky’s public pension system transparent and eliminating the part-time politicians’ pension system. “Future Shock Solutions: 16 steps to treat Kentucky’s…

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…