Graphic reading: KDE News, Kentucky Department of Education

Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) staff members discussed progress made with the statewide Portrait of a Learner during the KDE School Curriculum, Assessment and Accountability Council meeting on July 18.

The Kentucky Board of Education approved the statewide Portrait of a Learner in October 2022. The Portrait of a Learner is an agreed-upon set of aspirations for what every learner should know and be able to do when they graduate.

Meredith Brewer, director of education policy for KDE, said many individual districts have adopted their own Portraits of a Learner – sometimes known as a Portrait of a Graduate – which helped shaped the statewide portrait.

“But how do we use those portraits to really transform the student experience?” she asked.

Sarah Snipes, program manager for the KDE Division of Innovation, said the department is collecting data to evaluate where Kentucky districts are in the process of adopting and implementing Portraits of a Learner so that KDE can provide meaningful assistance where needed.

“(Districts have) gotten a really great handle on developing a set of competencies with our communities, but then we’re not quite sure sometimes where to go after those competencies (are publicized),” said Snipes.

Snipes shared the current data highlighting where Kentucky school districts are at with implementing their own locally developed Portrait of a Learner or the statewide Portrait:

  • 42 districts have finalized a set of competencies.
  • 37 districts are developing a set of competencies.
  • 21 districts are considering development of a set of competencies.
  • 8 districts are not considering development.
  • 63 districts have not indicated where they are at with a Portrait of a Learner.

Snipes said KDE will continue to actively engage with school districts to see what kind of support they need.

“We’re excited to continue this journey of learning with our districts to guide our work and work alongside them,” said Snipes.

SCAAC members also discussed:

  • An update on the Kentucky United We Learn Council;
  • 2023 standards setting; and
  • Assessment and accountability updates.