Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear joined Education Commissioner Terry Holliday and other education advocates to celebrate the educational achievement on Thursday.
"Kentucky has made dramatic progress in P-12 education in recent years, and we should be proud of that," Gov. Beshear said in a press release. "This Quality Counts report recognizes all the hard work of teachers, administrators, parents, business and community members to educate our young people which will result in stronger workforce and improved quality of life for the people of the Commonwealth."
The report from the national publication that focuses on preschool through high school education tracks key education indicators and grades states on their policy efforts and outcomes. The Commonwealth ranked 14th in last year's study. In 2010, the state ranked 34th.
"Kentucky is emerging as a leader in education," Kentucky Education Commissioner Terry Holliday said in a press release. "Senate Bill 1 (2009) mapped the course with rigorous academic standards aligned to the demands of college and career; assessment and accountability that drives improvement; and a focus on educator training and effectiveness that results in greater student achievement and readiness. We would not have come so far, so fast, without the support of Gov. Beshear, legislators, business and community members; and the hard work of teachers, administrators, parents and students and staff."
The theme of this year's report was the impact of a school's social and disciplinary environment on students' ability to learn and on the teacher and administrators tasked with guiding them, according to the article in Education Week that was originally released Jan. 4.
The Quality Counts report provides data and information about states' efforts in six categories:
Standards, Assessments and Accountability
Transitions and Alignment
Chance for Success (an index that combines information from 13 indicators that cover state residents' lives from cradle to career)
In the study, states were assigned overall letter grades based on the average of scores for the six categories. This year, Kentucky's overall grade was a "B-minus" (80.1), an improvement over last year's grade and a higher grade than the national average, which was a "C-plus" (76.9).
Ohio also earned a B-minus ranking (79.6). Indiana earned a C-plus ranking (77.8).
No states received a grade of A in the 2013 edition of the Quality Counts reports. The highest-ranking state for the fifth year in a row was Maryland, with a B-plus (87.5). It was the only state to receive a B-plus ranking.
Three states received B grades; eight states received B-minus grades; and 19 states received C-plus grades.
Seven states and the District of Columbia earned C-minus grades. The lowest rated state on the list is South Dakota (69.3), which was the only state to earn a D+ score.
*Quality Counts does not provide ratings on all of the six categories each year.
Quality Counts also provides detailed scoring for each major area, and on a 100-point scale, Kentucky scored at 90 or above in five areas: School Accountability (Standards, Assessment & Accountability); Building & Supporting Capacity (Teaching Profession); Early Childhood Education; College Readiness; and Economy and Workforce (Transitions and Alignment). Kentucky received a perfect score in School Accountability and Economy & Workforce. The state's lowest score was in Spending (School Finance), in which Kentucky's total was 53.4 points.
DETAILED SCORING INFORMATION – QUALITY COUNTS
Chance for Success
Standards, Assessments & Accountability
Accountability for Quality
Incentives & Allocation
Building & Supporting Capacity
Transitions & Alignment
Economy & Workforce
To view the full report click on the following link or visit the Education Week website.