Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Winters Credits Winters for State Leap in Quality Counts

Now Will the Legislature Fund SB1?

This from the Murray Ledger:

First District Sen. Ken Winters says he is thrilled that Kentucky has risen to 14th in the nation for work on academic standards, the teaching profession and many other variables in public education.

The newly-released rankings in “Education Week,” a national publication that focuses on P-12 education, last year ranked Kentucky 34th in reports tracking key education indicators that grade states on policy efforts to improve education in the primary and secondary level in an article titled, “Quality Counts,” according to a news release from Gov. Steve Beshear’s office.

Beshear said Kentucky can take pride in the standings.

“Kentucky continues to show measureable progress in education, and the rankings provided in ‘Quality Counts’ recognize the hard work of teachers, administrators, parents and community members,” Beshear said.

The Kentucky General Assembly’s approval of Senate Bill 1 in 2009, spearheaded by Winters and some of his colleagues, was particularly cited as part of the reason for the new ranking. Kentucky Education Commissioner Terry Holliday said much of the impetus for the ranking is due to Senate Bill 1.

“That legislation set us on a course to become a leader nationwide, and with the support of Gov. Beshear, legislators, teachers, administrators and parents, Kentucky’s work in school accountability, teacher training, college/career readiness and stronger academic standards is moving us in the right direction,” Holliday said.

Winters, R-Murray, said he was happy to play his part in the most important change in Kentucky since the Kentucky Education Reform Act in the 1990s.

“I am very excited about the movement on the national scene about how people perceive our educational program in Kentucky,” Winters said late last week. “I noticed the commissioner gave credit to Senate Bill 1 which I was the principal sponsor of in 2009. If you look at the statistical scores on the items that really bring us to the forefront its the standards, assessment and accountability. That’s the whole basis for Senate Bill 1. A lot of people recognize that as something substantial, and I rejoice along with the department of education and all of the general assembly that had a role in passing that bill.”

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