Kentucky: Council on Postsecondary Education

Council on Postsecondary Education

Press Release Date:  Wednesday, September 01, 2010  
Contact Information:  Sue Patrick
Cell: 502-330-6596

Back row, l-r: CPE President Bob King, WKU President Gary Randsdell, Murray State President Randy Dunn, KSU President Mary Evans Sias, EKU President Doug Whitlock, UK President Lee Todd, AIKCU Chair William Huston, NKU President James Votruba, Morehead State President Wayne Andrews, UofL President Jim Ramsey, KDE Commissioner Terry Holliday, EPSB Executive Director Phil Rogers, KCTCS Vice Chancellor Gloria McCall; Front row: Rep. Carl Rollins, First Lady Jane Beshear, Sen. Ken Winters, Student Ben Whitlock

Governor declares September as College and Career Readiness Month

Campus presidents from Kentucky's colleges and universities signed a resolution earlier today pledging their commitment to be full partners with the Kentucky Department of Education in preparing high school graduates to be college and career ready.

While campuses have long been involved with college readiness programs in their service regions, today’s action signals a significant commitment to continue and expand college and career readiness services and programs to more students. Kentucky data shows that students who are prepared for college graduate college at twice the rate of those who are not prepared.

Senate Bill 1, passed by the 2009 General Assembly, calls for P-12 and higher education systems to work more closely together to create the alignment necessary to improve readiness levels required for students to succeed in a credit-bearing course at a postsecondary institution.

“Senate Bill 1 has re-energized our efforts at the highest levels on our campuses,” said Council on Postsecondary Education President Robert King. “In my experience working in several states, I have not seen this level and depth of cooperation and collaboration that is represented here by all campuses and embedded in this commitment.”

In February, Kentucky was the first state in the country to adopt new common core standards at a joint meeting of the Council on Postsecondary Education, the Kentucky Board of Education and the Education Professional Standards Board. Higher, clearer and more in-depth academic standards are required by Senate Bill 1.

In May, the Kentucky Department of Education and the CPE developed a set of unified strategies to promote college readiness and degree completion for underprepared students. The goal is to reduce by 50 percent the number of recent high school graduates entering college not prepared for credit-bearing coursework, and to increase graduation rates of postsecondary students with college readiness needs.

“As part of the mandates of 2009’s Senate Bill 1, the Kentucky Board of Education will adopt a new system of school and district accountability that puts great emphasis on college and career readiness,” said Kentucky Education Commissioner Terry Holliday. “The resolution signed today confirms the commitment of the state’s higher education institutions to moving Kentucky forward and working as partners to improve our children’s futures.”

First Lady Jane Beshear expressed the administration’s support for ongoing work to implement Senate Bill 1, and read a proclamation signed by Governor Steven Beshear declaring September 2010 as College and Career Readiness Month in Kentucky.

Eastern Kentucky University President Doug Whitlock, convener of the Advisory Conference of Presidents, highlighted a number of campus initiatives that are improving readiness of Kentucky’s students. The initiatives represent the breadth and depth of programs and services in support of a stronger P-16 pipeline.

Other state leaders offering remarks included Ken Winters, chair of the Senate Education Committee, Rep. Carl Rollins, chair of the House Education Committee, and Philip Rogers, executive director of the Education Professional Standards Board.

Student speaker, Benjamin Whitlock, a senior at Green County High School, challenged school officials to set high expectations for students. Whitlock said students would meet the challenge.

The event was sponsored by Kentucky’s college and universities and the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education, in partnership with Kentucky Department of Education and Education Professional Standards Board.

For event photos and information on college and career readiness, visit

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Last Updated 9/2/2010