Wednesday, May 27, 2020
Virginia Moore, an American Sign Language interpreter, signs “We Go Together,” as the video that the McCracken County High School drama students made plays during Gov. Andy Beshear's COVID-19 address.

The show goes on in McCracken County, seniors honor teacher on closing night

COVID-19 has canceled plans for students throughout Kentucky. When a performance was postponed for the drama class at McCracken County High School, the students decided that the show must go on.
Laura Cole, a mathematics teacher at Scott High School (Kenton County) is interviewed by Lauren Minor of WXIX-TV after Cole was named a Milken Educator Award winner in a surprise ceremony at the school. Photo by Mike Marsee, Feb. 26, 2020

Milken award winner helping students, colleagues excel

Laura Cole, a mathematics teacher in Kenton County who was the recipient of a Milken Educator Award, chose teaching over accounting and has impacted both students and fellow teachers.
Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles assisted Harrison County School Superintendent Harry Burchett and other school officials with meal distribution due to school closures caused by the COVID-19 (coronavirus) outbreak.

How Harrison County handled being the first Kentucky school district impacted by COVID-19

Harry Burchett, superintendent of Harrison County schools, explains how he and his staff handled being the first Kentucky school district to cease in-person classes because of COVID-19.
Lt. Gov. Jacqueline Coleman, center, meets with social studies teacher Mary Shouse of the Stewart Home and School and members of the school's student council to discuss civic engagement and community service.

KBE SPOTLIGHT | Time and situation right for Coleman to champion public education

Lt. Gov. Jacqueline Coleman, an ex officio member of the Kentucky Board of Education, has made Kentucky’s public education system a top priority since being elected and named secretary of the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet.
Aaron Thompson, president of the Council on Postsecondary Education and an ex officio member of the Kentucky Board of Education, knows the value of a good education.

KBE SPOTLIGHT: Aaron Thompson believes every child should have the chance to learn

Aaron Thompson knows the power of a good education. His life is a testament to education’s value and he’s lived in service of it most of his adult life.
From the Desk of Commissioner Kevin C. Brown. An update for Kentucky's Families about the COVID-19 crisis and our schools, May 22, 2020

Interim Commissioner Kevin C. Brown’s May 22 letter to families

To honor the perseverance of our seniors, the Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) has produced “Kentucky’s Tribute to the Class of 2020,” a one-hour program that will be streamed on the department’s special YouTube channel at 7 p.m. ET this Saturday, May 23.
Aaron Thompson

An Open Letter to the Class of 2020

As the head of public higher education in Kentucky, I’m usually asked to deliver at least one commencement address each May. If I were giving one this year, I’d probably start by offering both my congratulations and condolences.
From the Desk of Commissioner Kevin C. Brown. An update for Kentucky's Families about the COVID-19 crisis and our schools, May 15, 2020

Interim Commissioner Kevin C. Brown’s May 15 letter to families

As this school year draws to a close, I’d like to thank you on behalf of KDE staff and the education profession for your assistance in ensuring Kentucky students continued to learn during the extraordinary circumstances brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic. We understand the pressures you are facing as you balance caring for children, helping them learn and, in many cases, continuing your own work.
From the Desk of Commissioner Kevin C. Brown. An update for Kentucky's Families about the COVID-19 crisis and our schools, May 8, 2020

Interim Commissioner Kevin C. Brown’s May 8 letter to families

With all that has happened in the closing weeks of this school year, you may not want to think about what the next school year will look like for your children just yet. That’s certainly understandable given that we have all been working so hard to complete this year under extraordinary circumstances brought about by the COVID-19 emergency.
Interim Commissioner Kevin C. Brown

Thanking Kentucky’s public school teachers

May is always a special time of the year in education because that’s when we celebrate national Teacher Appreciation Week, which this year is being celebrated May 4-8.
Interim Commissioner Kevin C. Brown

A thank you to teachers from Interim Commissioner Kevin C. Brown

There are times when merely saying thank you doesn’t seem to be enough and this is certainly one of those times. We pause each year at this time during National Teacher Appreciation Week to express our gratitude for the important work you do.
COVID-19 Considerations for Reopening Schools Supporting Student and Staff Wellness

KDE releases guidance on social emotional health for when schools reopen

The Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) released a new guidance document May 26 about how districts can support students, faculty and staff through social emotional learning when schools begin to reopen in the fall.
Financial Transparency Data Released on Kentucky School Report Card

Kentucky School Report Card financial data features new financial narrative

Kentucky residents can now see how much schools spend per student and other financial expenditures with a new update of the Kentucky Department of Education’s School Report Card, which was released May 26.
News

Kentucky students eligible for new emergency food benefits

The Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services (CHFS) Department for Community Based Services (DCBS) and the Kentucky Department of Education are partnering to provide food assistance to families who have lost access to free or reduced-price school meals during the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) emergency.
Governor's Call with Superintendents graphic

Gov. Beshear introduces contact tracing to Kentucky’s superintendents

In a May 21 call with Kentucky’s 172 superintendents, Gov. Andy Beshear and Mark Carter – who was recently appointed as executive adviser leading the contact tracing – spoke of the importance of accurate and efficient contact tracing as a way to manage the transmission of the COVID-19 virus.
Special Superintendents' Webcast: May 19, 2020

Kentucky’s superintendents dive into KDE reopening guidance document during webcast

Superintendents from Kentucky’s 172 school districts joined Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) leadership during a May 19 webcast as they dove into the reopening guidance document released by the department on May 15 that leads school leaders through a variety of questions to consider when planning how to start classes for the 2020-2021 school year.
Recognitions

Kentucky students win National Security Language Initiative scholarships

Nine students at The Gatton Academy of Mathematics and Science at Western Kentucky University have received a nationally-competitive National Security Language Initiative for Youth (NSLI-Y) Scholarships for immersive, critical language study this summer and next academic year.
Contests

High School Speech League State Tournament names winners

The Kentucky High School Speech League (KHSSL) State Tournament celebrated its 100 year of state competitions with students from throughout the state competing virtually in 14 speech events. The first KHSSL statewide debate was held in 1921 with speech events added the next year.
Announcements

Three Schools Win $100K DON’T QUIT! Fitness Center

The multi-million dollar DON’T QUIT! Campaign has named Stuart Academy/Frost Sixth-Grade Academy (Jefferson County), Hiseville Elementary School (Barren County) and Wurtland Middle School (Greenup County) as the state’s most outstanding schools for demonstrating leadership in getting and keeping their students fit.
Announcements

Nominations sought for KDE commissioner of education

The Kentucky Board of Education – with the assistance of Greenwood/Asher and Associates Inc. – is searching for nominations for the next commissioner of education.
Conferences

Free claim-evidence-reasoning workshop for science teachers

The Collaborative for Teaching and Learning (CTL) is holding a free virtual workshop with one-hour sessions for middle and high school science teachers who want to learn more about using claim-evidence-reasoning to support students in constructing clear and concise scientific explanations. The sessions will be held July 20 and 24, Aug. 3 and 20, and Sept. 3.

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