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How a New Governor Can Really Mess Up Your Education Plans

By Michele McNeil — November 09, 2007 1 min read
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When a new governor gets elected, there’s a new sheriff in town. And that’s bound to mean changes, including in the education realm.

Kentucky Gov.-elect Steve Beshear, a Democrat who beat incumbent Republican Gov. Ernie Fletcher, already is letting the State Board of Education know who’s the boss in Kentucky.

The board of education is in middle of a search for a new education commissioner to replace Gene Wilhoit, who left last year to lead the Council of Chief State School Officers.

The board had narrowed the choice to four, and was poised to name a new commissioner next week — but that was before Beshear said he wanted the board to start all over, and hire a better search firm. Read about the four finalists, which include the CEO of the Florida Association of School Administrators, here.

The board, which has sole authority to hire the new commissioner, has said it’s now unsure how to proceed, according to media reports. Though Beshear has no official power to select an education commissioner, he will have influence over the board since the governor appoints 11 of the 12 members. And, Beshear will have his opportunity to put his stamp on the board in April, when four of the 11 members’ four-year terms expire.