Take Note
Kentucky School Advocate
October 2017
Adapt and achieve
Change is perhaps not adequate to describe what is going on in the world of Kentucky PS-12 education, but however fast the pace, school boards are doing their best to keep up and keep their eye on student achievement. That’s why the planning committee for KSBA’s 2018 annual conference chose the conference theme of: “Kentucky School Boards: Adapting and Achieving” from among the possible slogans.
 
“I think this year’s annual conference theme is terrific because it is a perfect description of Kentucky’s public schools – and our school boards,” said KSBA Executive Director Kerri Schelling. “Adapting and achieving are behaviors that school board members do all the time so it was no surprise that it was the top vote-getter among the planning committee.”
The theme will be woven throughout the three-day conference March 2–4 at Louisville’s Galt House.
 
Planning for the event is continuing; visit KSBA’s website, www.ksba.org, in the upcoming months for details.

Battle stations
A total of 108 schools from 19 districts are participating in the 2018 Kentucky Battle of the School Buildings. Competitors include the 2016 inaugural winner, Woodford County’s Southside Elementary.
 
The competition recognizes the top school building that reduces its energy use on a percentage basis in calendar year 2017 compared with calendar year 2016. It also honors all participating schools that reduce their energy use over that period by at least 20 percent, as measured by energy use intensity (EUI).

Magna-nimous
The National School Boards Association has opened its annual Magna Awards program for nominees for the 2018 honors. The national recognition program honors school board best practices and innovative programs that advance student learning, showcasing school district leadership, creativity and commitment to student achievement. Entries are assessed by a panel of independent judges.
 
Magna nominations are judged in three enrollment categories: under 5,000 enrollment; 5,000-20,000 enrollment; and over 20,000 enrollment. One Grand Prize Winner is named in each category, with Grand Prize Winners receiving $5,000 from sponsor Sodexo. There are five additional winners and five honorable mention winners within each enrollment category.
 
All Magna winners and honorable mention recipients are recognized in a special section of the American School Board Journal, as well as at the School Leaders Luncheon at NSBA’s Annual Conference.
 
The deadline for nominations is midnight on Monday, Nov. 6. For more information, go to www.nsba.org and enter Magna Awards in the search box.

Charter point man
School board members and others attending this year’s KSBA Winter Symposium will hear the latest on the implementation of Kentucky’s charter school regulations and their role in that process from the state’s charter schools point person. Earl Simms, recently hired by the Kentucky Department of Education to head the agency’s new Division of Charter Schools, will be the Friday keynote speaker at the winter training session, Dec. 1–2 at the Marriott Louisville East.
 
Simms came to Kentucky from Missouri, where he most recently was St. Louis director of the Office of Charter Schools with the University of Missouri College of Education. In that post, he monitored school compliance and the performance of 10 K-12 charter schools with an enrollment of 4,000 students. Simms is a graduate of duPont Manual High School in Jefferson County and holds a bachelor’s degree from Murray State University.
New face on KSBA board
Daviess County school board member Dale Stewart is the new regional chairperson on the KSBA Board of Directors, representing boards in the association’s Second Region. Stewart is a retired educator and consultant for Western Kentucky University, and also is a director at First Security Bank. He is in his first term on the Daviess County board.
 
Stewart spent nearly three decades in the Daviess County school district, including the job of principal at Apollo High School, during which he won Kentucky High School Principal of the Year honors in both 1997 and 2001. During his education career, he also worked as a highly skilled educator for the Kentucky Department of Education in 1998 and served a term on the KHSAA Board of Control.
 
Stewart holds a bachelor’s degree from Kentucky Wesleyan College and a master’s degree and Rank I from Western Kentucky University.
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