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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.
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.
In Kentucky, when someone asks you, “How are you doing?” saying, “I’m fine” is almost a reflex action. These days, however, it’s almost certainly not true. I think it’s safe to say that none of us has truly been fine in the weeks since the COVID-19 pandemic changed all of our lives – and that’s fine.
Every day since the COVID-19 emergency began to take shape has brought new challenges for all of us who serve Kentucky’s students, and probably for all of you who are more intensively involved in your children’s education than ever before.
It has been just over a month since Kentucky’s first case of COVID-19 was confirmed, and it has been the longest month of many of our lives. We had no idea when that announcement was made on March 6 how our lives were about to change and we still don’t know when they’ll return to something close to normal.
Our focus at KDE is now three-fold – Educate, Feed and Support. Our first priority is ensuring your children still receive their education through the use of Kentucky’s Non-Traditional Instruction (NTI) Program.
As the first week of school closures due to the nationwide outbreak of COVID-19 draws to a close, I want to thank you all for the changes in schedules and sacrifices you have had to make to help keep our students and communities safe.
In the nearly two years that I have had the honor of serving as Kentucky’s commissioner of education, I have made students’ preparation for success in the workforce a top priority.