Kentucky school officials lining up to raise drop out age as ink dries on new law

03/19/2013 02:18 PM

Superintendents from Kentucky’s largest school districts have announced that they will push for their school board members to increase the drop out age from 16 to 18.

Thanks to a new measure signed into law on Monday, school districts are allowed to raise the drop out age.

In Northern Kentucky, Campbell County School District officials told Pure Politics they support raising the drop out age.

“Yes we will be pursuing it, but it may take a few months for us to get policies in place and other supporting documentation that may be required by the Commissioner of Education,” Glen Miller, the Supt. of Campbell County Schools told Pure Politics in an email. “Once I have everything ready, I will take it to a Board meeting for approval.”

And the superintendent for Kenton County Schools said she was “considering making the official designation to move the drop out age to 18.”

“The traditional school we once knew is fading, as it should to allow for the future needs of our community. The old rules that were once in place keeping students on a common schedule are also disappearing,” Terri Cox-Cruey, the superintendent of Kenton County Schools told Pure Politics on Tuesday.

“I believe that the Kenton County School District will be successful as we continue to expand our options, provide greater personalization of learning and consequently ensuring all of our students are successful graduates,” she said.

Jefferson and Fayette County school officials made it clear they would push for the increase even as the ink still drying on Gov. Steve Beshear’s signature.

Beshear signed the bill Monday after calling for an increase in the drop-out age since his first term.

Jefferson County School officials told the Courier Journal Friday that they were interested in raising the drop out age. And Monday, Fayette County Public Schools Superintendent Tom Shelton said he too favors the move.

Shelton told the the Hearld-Leader that he would make his pitch to the school board as soon as possible.

Before this measure was signed into law, students could drop out at age 16 with their parents’ permission.

Once 55 percent of Kentucky’s school districts adopt the legislation, the remaining school districts would have four years to convert to the new age requirement.

- Senior correspondent Don Weber contributed to this report.

About Nick Storm

Nick Storm is the Anchor and Managing Editor of Pure Politics, the only nightly program dedicated to Kentucky politics. Nick covers all of the political heavyweights and his investigative work brings to light issues that might otherwise go unnoticed, like the connection between the high profile Steubenville, Ohio rape and a Kentucky hacker whose push for further investigation could put him in federal prison. Nick is also working on a feature length bio documentary Outlaw Poet: A documentary on Ron Whitehead. Follow Nick on Twitter @NickStorm_cn2. Nick can be reached at 502-792-1107 or nicholas.storm@charter.com.

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