Richards/Brown Unveil "Priority One" Education Package
Improving education in Kentucky will be "Priority One" under a Jody Richards administration, the Kentucky House Speaker announced today. The program, which indicates Richards' intentions to place education as his top priority as Kentucky's next Governor, highlights several areas that need improvement, including teacher pay and higher education assistance.
"Kentucky's journey to reform education has been long. I am proud to have led the way in that journey," Richards said. "As Governor, I will ensure that every child learns in a class that is safer, smaller, and state-of-the-art."
Richards' plan details numerous policies within four major areas: elementary and secondary education; higher education; classroom technology; and teacher incentives and training. Among other things, the plan calls for:
* Funding all-day kindergarten for all public schools in the Commonwealth, allowing for more instructional time at an early age;
* Increasing funding for early intervention programs for students who are at high risk of dropping out;
* Establishing "College Opportunity Grants," which would double the amount of need-based assistance given to students in the neediest 25th percentile of applicants;
* Continuing to add computers to all classrooms throughout the Commonwealth to establish virtual classrooms and allow students to interact with their peers across the state, throughout the nation, and around the world;
* Raising the pay of teachers to keep Kentucky competitive in terms of attracting and retaining top-tier educators and;
* Initiating the first-in-the-nation "Principal's Academy" in Kentucky - a program to instruct men and women on how to be effective school administrators.
"Without an educational system that is second-to-none, all of Kentucky's goals become unattainable," Richards said. "Improving the educational standards of our state is the single most important step in solving the most pressing needs of the Commonwealth."