I marked my one-year anniversary at the helm of the Kentucky Department of Education last month with a trip to Meade County, the school district I graduated from more years ago than I like to admit.
About a year ago, someone from the Kentucky Education Association reached out to our office and asked if we would like to display the drawings our public school students did as part of their Difference Makers Art Contest. As those drawings were recently being taken down, it got me thinking about how they connect to the department’s efforts on teacher diversity and teacher recruitment.
There’s a phrase you may hear in education circles – particularly in Kentucky – called student voice. Student voice is the idea that students should have some say about how their education takes place.
The 2021-2022 school year is set to start up in just a few weeks and many of us – educators and parents alike – are contemplating what the next year will look like.
By now, you’ve hopefully heard about the Commissioner’s Virtual Listening Tour. For more than a month, I led a series of virtual town halls in conjunction with the education cooperatives and the University of Kentucky’s College of Education to hear directly from parents, students, educators and community members about what is and isn’t working in Kentucky’s education system.
This year, Teacher Appreciation Week will be May 3-7. This year’s theme is #ThankATeacher. I am thankful every day for the teachers who have helped and inspired me along the way.
All of us at the Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) are committed to the core values of equity, achievement, collaboration and integrity. These are the values that drive our work day after day.
I like to say that people who are drawn to becoming teachers generally have a calling. That got me thinking; why do we often call teaching a calling?
When Education Commissioner Jason E. Glass called me last year to ask if I would become Kentucky’s first chief equity officer, it was one of the greatest honors of my career.
Throughout the course of my education career, I have engaged in numerous discussions on how and if schools should discuss and teach controversial topics with students.