Published Online: January 3, 2006

Kentucky's State Highlights

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Vital Statistics
Public schools 1,370
Public school teachers 41,201
Pre-K-12 students 663,885
Annual pre-K-12 expenditures $4.4 billion
Minority students 12.4%
Children in poverty 25%
Students with disabilities 15.6%
English-language learners 1%

Summary of Grades

Kentucky scores at or above average in three of the four graded policy categories in Quality Counts.

The state does well in standards and accountability, scoring above the average state in this section. Kentucky posts a strong showing on the school accountability indicators and receives full credit on indicators related to assessments. The state has tests aligned to state standards in the four core subjects at every grade span; elementary, middle, and high school.

In teacher quality, Kentucky’s performance is again better than average. The state has strong policies related to professional support and training for teachers. Kentucky is one of only 15 states to require and finance mentoring for all novice teachers. But the state has room to improve in the area of teacher education and qualifications.

Kentucky does not fare as well in school climate. One reason for its below-average score is that the state lags behind other states on measures of choice and autonomy. Kentucky joins only six other states and the District of Columbia in not having public school openenrollment programs. State law also does not allow charter schools.

Kentucky scores at the national average in resource equity. The state scores relatively well on the coefficient-of-variation measure. This indicates a relatively low degree of disparity in funding levels among Kentucky’s districts, compared with other states.

State Policy Report Card
Kentucky Avg. State Score
Standards and accountability B+ B-
Efforts to improve teacher quality B C+
School climate C C+
Resource equity C C
Overall Grade B- C+
Quality Counts Grading Breakdown
Standards and accountability Points awardedPoints possible
Standards 31.67 40
Assessment 30 30
School accountability 27 30
89 100
Efforts to improve teacher quality Points awardedPoints possible
Teacher education and qualifications 23.63 35
Teacher assessment 27.3 30
Professional support and training 20 20
Accountability for teacher quality 13.65 15
85 100
School climate Points awardedPoints possible
Engagement 9.67 15
School safety 17.08 20
Parent involvement 9.9 15
Choice and autonomy 10 20
Class size 9.87 10
School size 7.83 10
School facilities 10 10
74 100
Resource equity Points awardedPoints possible
Wealth-neutrality score 28.33 33.3
McLoone Index 20.67 33.3
Coefficient of variation 27.33 33.3
76 100
Note: Details may not sum to totals due to rounding.

Vol. 25, Issue 17

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