Statement by Dr. Terry Brooks, executive director of Kentucky Youth Advocates
LOUISVILLE, KY – If kids are to be served well in a post-COVID world, it is incumbent on us all to be inventive and creative in supporting them. When it comes to schools, that means that we simply cannot go back to business as usual. A thoughtful example of doing things differently on behalf of children is Senate Bill 128, championed by Senator Max Wise, chairman of the Senate Education Committee.
Senate Bill 128, which has now passed the Kentucky Senate and House of Representatives and is now headed to the Governor’s desk for signature, will provide Kentucky’s public and non-public K-12 students the option to complete a “do-over” of their school year that has been interrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The bill provides a framework for students and their parents or caregivers to submit their request for a supplemental school year to retake and supplement coursework already completed to their local board of education, who can accept or deny all requests.
While some students have adapted well to pandemic e-learning, this is not the case for all students. We know the digital divide and access to technology, availability of a parent or other supportive adult throughout the school day, and many other factors impact how a student fared during the 2020-2021 school year. A “do-over” academic year offers families the opportunity to help close any learning gaps experienced through Non-Traditional Instruction time during the pandemic for Kentucky students.
We thank Senator Wise for championing this measure and prioritizing students’ education. We also thank the 2021 Kentucky General Assembly for supporting its passage this session.
About Kentucky Youth Advocates
Kentucky Youth Advocates believes all children deserve to be safe, healthy, and secure. As THE independent voice for Kentucky’s children, we work to ensure policymakers create investments and policies that are good for children. Learn more at www.kyyouth.org.