Sunday, March 18, 2018
Jarred Moore, left, and Dakota Washington, both 9th-grade students at The Providence School (Jessamine County), pet Kompass, a therapy dog used at the school. Kompass is one of two therapy dogs that interact with students at The Providence School, one of 11 Alternative Programs of Distinction recognized by the Kentucky Department of Education earlier this year. Photo by Bobby Ellis, Aug. 18, 2017

State’s top alternative programs are true success stories

From canine companions to community outreach, there are many ways in which districts are working to meet students’ needs.
Scott King, a 7th-grade science teacher at Camp Ernst Middle School (Boone County), analyzed his school's TELL survey results with Michelle New, Kentucky Education Association director of professional excellence, at KEA's TALK conference. Teachers delved into their school’s data to find areas for celebration and opportunities for improvement. Photo by Brenna Kelly, June 13, 2017.

Kentucky educators TELL it all

A record 91 percent of eligible Kentucky school-based certified educators responded to a survey about teaching conditions at their school.
Michelle Hendricks, an instructional coach at Boston Elementary School (Nelson County), listens to a fellow educator during her presentation on reducing classroom time lost in transitions at the Let's TALK: Conversations About Effective Teaching and Learning conference. Hendricks' seminar addressed how to reduce transition time by completing necessary tasks calmly, quickly and efficiently. Photo by Bobby Ellis, June 12, 2017

Finding more time for teaching

A Nelson County teacher helps educators reclaim some of the up to 90 hours she says are lost to transitions during the school year.
Stephanie Floyd, left, Rometta Brown and Dawn Curtsinger use a net and tote to search for insects, crayfish and other water life in a creek outside of Pulaski County High School during a water quality workshop put on to help science teachers introduce their students to water quality labs. Photo by Bobby Ellis, May 31, 2017

Testing the waters

Teachers went wading recently through Caney Fork Creek as part of a water quality testing workshop, overseen by Tabitha Owens, an environmental education specialist with the Kentucky Environmental Education Council. 
Brandon Hensley, an 8th-grade language arts teacher at Southern Middle School (Pulaski County), has developed a staged-discipline plan that has been proven to lower the numbers of referrals at his school. Hensley presented the discipline plan, which is designed to keep students in the classroom, in June at the Let's TALK: Conversations about Effective Teaching and Learning Conference in Lexington. Photo by Mike Marsee, June 13, 2017

Keeping students with discipline problems in the classroom

A Pulaski County middle school teacher found a way to decrease referrals and increase student learning.
Breckinridge County Area Technology Center students, from left, Luke Mattingly, Brenden Kiper and Wyatt Lucas check on parts being machined with a water drill. The parts will be used in the air filtration system on the International Space Station as part of the school's work with NASA's HUNCH (High School Students United with NASA to Create Hardware) program. Photo by Bobby Ellis, May 9, 2017

Students’ work heading into space

Students at Breckinridge County Area Technology Center have completed their third year in a NASA program in which they build training hardware.
Whitney Dotson, a 4th-grade teacher at Conkwright Elementary School (Clark County), pets a hedgehog during the Louisville Zoo in 3D. Teachers from around the state toured behind the scenes at the Louisville Zoo and sat in on lectures from Commissioner Stephen Pruitt and Dr. Terri Roth, the director of Cincinnati Zoo's CREW. Photo by Bobby Ellis, June 13, 2017

Behind the scenes at the Louisville Zoo

As a group of teachers from across the state entered the room for one recent professional learning session, they were greeted by some animals that you don't normally see in a reception area. The teachers had come to take part in the Louisville Zoo in 3D event, a day focused on showing educators that the zoo can be a valuable educational tool. 
Sarah Vivian, the principal at The Academy (Franklin County), finds a card showing that she and her "family" had been evicted and received a utility shut-off notice during a poverty simulation held at the Persistence to Graduation Summit. The simulation was designed to help educators understand the problems some of their students face on a daily basis. Photo by Bobby Ellis, June 14, 2017

Getting a glimpse of what poverty feels like

Simulation at the Persistence to Graduation Summit helps educators understand the problems many of their students face.
Becca Williams, a teacher at Madison Central High School (Madison County), looks under a rock for wildlife during the outdoor learning symposium. Photo by Bobby Ellis, June 15, 2017

Growing students with environmental education

Teachers discover the benefits of learning outside at the Kentucky Association for Environmental Education’s Outdoor Learning Symposium.
Woodford County firefighters use knives to cut out the windshield of a tipped school bus during a mass casualty simulation at the Bluegrass Railroad and Museum. Photo by Bobby Ellis, May 20, 2017

Preparing for the worst

Students help first responders train during a simulated bus and train collision at the Bluegrass Railroad and Museum in Versailles.