School Improvement

School Improvement

Published: 11/15/2023 10:04 AM

Continuous school improvement is an overarching goal for Kentucky schools to enhance educational opportunities and outcomes for all students. Districts and schools can use this page as a resource when preparing students for next-generation learning, the work force and citizenship.

Our mission is to provide guidance and assistance to Kentucky Alternative Education programs and ensure continuous improvement in instruction, practices and curriculum to help all Kentucky students to be college and career ready. 

Best Practices and Sustainability

​​The mission of the Best Practices' website is to promote practices that motivate, engage, and provide measurable results in school district achievement, processes and learning in schools throughout Kentucky.

Chronic Absenteeism

The Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) provides a variety of supports to schools and districts to identify students who may become chronically absent. Kentucky defines chronic absenteeism as missing ten percent or more of her/his enrolled academic year for any reason (excused and unexcused).

Comprehensive Improvement Planning

School and district improvement efforts focus on student needs through a collaborative process involving all stakeholders to establish and address priority needs, district funding, and closing achievement gaps between identified subgroups of students. The Comprehensive School/District Improvement Plans address the Kentucky Board of Education’s Goals.

Comprehensive Support and Improvement/Educational Recovery

As required by the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) and beginning with the 2018-19 school year, the Kentucky Department of Education will identify Comprehensive Support and Improvement (CSI) schools referenced in KRS 160.346. CSI schools are low-performing schools that have an overall score in the bottom five percent of overall scores by level. 

Continuous Improvement

The Continuous Improvement for GAP Closure website provides information, resources and tools designed to assist schools and districts in their efforts to reduce the number of students scoring below proficiency and improve overall student achievement.

Digital Learning

Our mission is to provide evidence that digital learning has a positive impact on the preparation of all students in Kentucky schools to graduate college and career ready.

Evidence-based Practices

In December 2015, the United States Congress reauthorized the Elementary and Secondary Education Act through a law known as the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). Designed to increase flexibility for state and local school systems, ESSA provides schools with new opportunities for innovation and school improvement.​

​One requirement under ESSA is that school improvement efforts be rooted in "evidence-based activities, strategies, or interventions". While the term evidence-based has been in other areas of the law for many years, ESSA is the first federal law to define and identify levels of evidence for educational purposes.

Full-Service Community Schools

The Kentucky Community School Initiative (KCSI) seeks to create better outcomes for Kentucky students and to reduce barriers to learning. Beginning in the 2023-2024 school year, 20 districts and 40 schools from across the state will participate in this five-year, transformative initiative to implement full service community schools.​

​​​​​​​​​​​​The Division of Innovation is charged with incubating learning innovations to promote personalized learning for each and every student, with the hope that these new approaches to learning could be scaled in the future.​​​​​​​​​​​​​

LEAD - Kentucky National Institute for School Leadership (NISL)

KDE has been working with National Institute for School Leadership (NISL) to provide leadership training to school and district leaders. NISL is a thoroughly researched and  fully tested program designed to assist schools and districts across the state with leadership development efforts. 

Management Improvement Program

KRS 158.780 and 158.785 require that the Kentucky Board of Education (KBE) establish a program for management improvement services for those school districts which demonstrate such a critical lack of efficiency or effectiveness in governance or administration that state-mandated corrective action or state control of the district is required.

No Pass/No Drive Law

The No Pass/No Drive Law (KRS 159.051) was passed during the 2007 legislative session and affects every public and private school in Kentucky (including home school students). The law says that schools will use academic and attendance data from the previous semester of the school year to determine whether 16 and 17-year-old students are compliant with the law.

Persistence to Graduation

The Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) provides a variety of supports to schools and districts to identify students who may be off-track for College and Career Readiness, promotion, and/or on-time graduation and provide interventions to support students until they earn a diploma.

Safe Schools

The Kentucky Department of Education provides various resources for schools, parents and districts, such as bullying prevention training, suicide prevention training, assistance with children experiencing bullying, and guidance on missing children in Kentucky and safe schools data collection in schools.

Stronger Connections Grant​​​​

The Stronger Connections Grant (SCG) Program is intended to support evidence-based school safety and climate plans, along with other evidence-based strategies for creating safe, healthy, and supportive schools.

Targeted Support and Improvement

As required by the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) and beginning with the 2018-19 school year, the Kentucky Department of Education will identify Targeted Support and Improvement (TSI) schools referenced in KRS 160.346. TSI schools have low-performing gap groups. 

Title IV, Part A - Student Support and Academic Enrichment

Authorized under subpart 1 of Title IV, Part A of the ESEA, the Student Support and Academic Enrichment (SSAE) program is intended to help meet student support and academic enrichment goals by increasing the capacity of State educational agencies (SEAs), local educational agencies (LEAs), schools, and local communities.​

​Kelly Foster
Office of Continuous Improvement and Support
300 Sower Blvd., 5th Floor
Frankfort, KY 40601
(502) 564-5130 Ext. 4001
Fax (502) 564-8149
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