12 Ky. school districts share $8.8 million to implement new education standards

12 districts share $8.8 million award

jwarren@herald-leader.comSeptember 20, 2011 

A dozen Kentucky school districts will share in an $8.8 million "integration grant" from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to help implement new common core content standards and take other steps to boost instruction.

The recipients are the districts for Daviess, Fleming, Gallatin, Jessamine, Lee, Owen, Washington, Jefferson, Kenton, Magoffin and Simpson counties, and Jackson Independent Schools.

The grant, announced Monday by the state Department of Education, is intended to help the districts implement Kentucky's new standards for math and English language arts, which took effect this school year; to develop new ways to measure effective teaching; and to devise innovative tools for instruction. Other Kentucky school districts could then learn from their examples.

"The 12 school districts ... will be models for the rest of the state," Kentucky Education Commissioner Terry Holliday said in a statement. "Their efforts will be crucial to Kentucky's implementation of the common core content standards.

"Students will receive meaningful and rigorous instruction, while their teachers will be supported through high-quality resources and measurement of their effectiveness."

Jessamine County Superintendent Lu Young said her district expected to receive about $195,000."It couldn't come at a more opportune time," she said. "Professional development funding from the state has dwindled down to almost nothing, so these private-sector grants are helping us keep good teacher training going."

Colorado and Louisiana also are receiving the Gates grants this year. The awards are for three years.

Reach Jim Warren at (859) 231-3255 or 1-800-950-6397, Ext. 3255.

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