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Would measure make Kentucky's state education system more political -- or less?

kentucky capitol
Ed Reinke

A bill making its way through the Kentucky General Assembly would change the way the state’s education commissioner is selected.

Senate Bill 107 would require the Kentucky Senate to confirm the state school board’s appointment – or reappointment – of the state education commissioner.

Opponents of the measure argue it would politicize Kentucky’s education system – a system that was overhauled by the 1990 Kentucky Education Reform Act in an effort to shield schools from political interference.

But supporters say SB 107 aims to make the Kentucky Board of Education and Kentucky Department of Education more independent from a governor’s administration.

On Cincinnati Edition, we discuss the legislation and what it could mean for Kentucky’s public schools.

NOTE: A previous version of this story did not reflect an amendment made to this bill by Kentucky lawmakers.


  • Jamie Lucke, editor in chief of The Kentucky Lantern
  • Gary Houchens, director of Western Kentucky University’s Educational Leadership Doctoral Program and professor in the School of Leadership & Professional Studies

Listen to Cincinnati Edition live at noon M-F. Audio for this segment will be uploaded after 4 p.m. ET.

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