Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

Opinion

April 14, 2013

Added incentive

Commissioner offers districts $10,000 to raise dropout age

ASHLAND — While a law enacted by the 2013 Kentucky General Assembly gives the state’s 174 public school districts the option of raising their mandatory school attendance age from 16 to 18, Kentucky Education Commissioner Terry Holliday is offering school districts an added incentive to raise their dropout age he hopes will soon make the higher dropout age mandatory throughout the state.

Holliday said the first 57 school districts that raise their dropout age from 16 to 18 will be given a $10,000 state grant. Just before Holliday announced the incentive at last week’s meeting of the Kentucky Board of Education in Frankfort, board members voted unanimously to adopt a resolution urging all school districts to raise the dropout age as soon as possible.

The state school board has for years been urging state legislators to raise Kentucky’s legal dropout age to 18, but board’s efforts fell on deaf ears until this year when the Kentucky General Assembly approved a compromise bill giving school districts an option of raising their dropout age. However, when — and if  — 55 percent of the state’s school districts individually raise their mandatory school attendance age to 18, the change will be made statewide within four years.

Hoping to set an example by becoming one of the first districts — if not the first — to raise their dropout age to 18, the Madison County Board of Education will vote this week on whether to raise the dropout age. Holliday, a stong proponent of raising the school attendance age, hopes districts throughout the state will quickly do the same, not just because it is the right thing to do, but also because it will send the right message that school districts throughout Kentucky are committed to lower their dropout rates.

We are still not convinced dozens of school districts will rush to take advantage  of the incentive offered by Holliday and rush to raise their dropout ages. We hope we are proven wrong because this state already has far too many adults who lack a high school education. We don’t need more.

1
Text Only
Opinion
  • What's next?

    While virtually all cities in northeastern Kentucky provide their residents with some utility services — water and sewer, mainly, and sometimes natural gas — to the best of our knowledge, Olive Hill is the only town in the FIVCO‚Äąregion with its own electrical company.
     

    April 13, 2014

  • 'Waited too long'

    Lt. Garlin Murl Conner left the U.S. Army as the second-most decorated soldier during World War II, earning four Silver Stars, four Bronze Stars, seven Purple Hearts and the Distinguished Service Cross for his actions during 28 straight months in combat.

    April 12, 2014

  • Enact HB 3

    The National Rx Drug Abuse Summit is under way hundreds of miles from eastern Kentucky in Orlando, Fla., but the three-day conference which runs through Thursday, was organized by Operation UNITE, the eastern Kentucky anti-drug group that knows all too well the devastating impact the prescription drug epidemic continues to have on this region.

    April 11, 2014

  • State officials cease efforts to stop advance of ash borer

    Kentucky’s war against the tiny emerald ash borer responsible for already killing more than 25 million ash trees in the eastern United States has ended in surrender — by state officials, not the tiny insect.

    April 8, 2014

  • Demise of apparel industry in Kentucky continues

    The steady demise of the once thriving clothing industry in small Kentucky towns continues with the latest factory to announce it is shutting down being one of the largest: Fruit of the Loom has announced it is closing its last remaining plant in Jamestown, a move that eventually will see the elimination of more than 600 jobs in the small town near Lake Cumberland.

    April 7, 2014

  • None on ballot

    The 2014 Kentucky General Assembly considered an unusually high number of proposed amendments to the Kentucky Constitution on such issues as casino gambling, the restoration of voting rights for convicted felons and the elimination of state and local elected offices.

    April 4, 2014

  • In Your View

    Letters to the editor

    April 3, 2014

  • Time runs out

    Two bills proposed by House Majority Leader Rocky Adkins and designed to boost the economy of this region have apparently died in the Kentucky Senate after being approved by the House of Representatives. Despite easily being approved by the Democratic-controlled House, neither bill was even brought up for a vote by the Republican-controlled Senate.

    April 2, 2014

  • Time runs out

    Two bills proposed by House Majority Leader Rocky Adkins and designed to boost the economy of this region have apparently died in the Kentucky Senate after being approved by the House of Representatives. Despite easily being approved by the Democratic-controlled House, neither bill was even brought up for a vote by the Republican-controlled Senate.

    April 2, 2014

  • Dismal numbers

    The good news is that the health ratings of all but two area counties improved in the latest ranking of the state’s 120 counties. However, before we pat ourselves on the back for those improvements, the overall health of residents of counties in northeast Kentucky remains rather dismal. Yes, we are improving but we still have a long, long way to go.

    April 2, 2014