For 20 years, Kentucky has helped lead the nation where it needs to go. You have seen dramatic results from your commitment to reform, and you understand the importance of the task at hand.
Education must be the one great equalizer in America. We can never forget that children have only one chance to get a great education. Working together with creativity, courage, and commitment, Kentucky can provide a world-class education for all children in your state.
Thank you for your seriousness of purpose. Thank you for your sense of urgency. Thank you for the example you continue to set for all of us.Okay, that's the dessert, served first.
U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan spoke on November 10 at the "Improving Productivity in Kentucky's Schools and Districts" conference in Louisville.
His core message was the importance of finding truly productive ways to transform education, using dollars more efficiently to raise student achievement, with professional development and technology innovations at the center. Transportation adjustments and consistent building repairs can contribute, but the central work has to transform classroom learning to build excellence in troubled financial times. Secretary Duncan argued forcefully:
So whether we like it or not, it’s clear that schools are going to be faced with the challenge of doing more with less for the foreseeable future. This is what we are calling the New Normal that everyone involved in education must grapple with. We must be smart, and we must be strategic.That thinking, the substantive "meal" served up in Louisville, is worth a close read.