At least ninety-six Kentucky school districts have now raised their minimum dropout age to 18, meaning the remaining districts have four years to implement a plan to do the same.
Two weeks ago, state education leaders launched “Blitz to 96” – an effort to get 96 school districts to adopt the higher compulsory attendance age as soon as possible. June 25 was the first day local boards of education could adopt the “Graduate Kentucky” standard; within the first 48 hours, 58 districts had voted to implement the policy and within the first week, 75 districts had done so.
Christian County was among the first 20 to make the move and the Trigg, Logan, Hopkins and Dawson Springs districts were also among the first 96.
Planning grants of $10,000 are being provided through the Kentucky Department of Education to the first 96 school districts that joined the effort to reach the 55 percent threshold. The funds are designed to be used to plan for full implementation of the policy in the 2015-16 school year.
Kentucky First Lady Jane Beshear issued a statement praising districts for taking the initiative, saying, “The effort speaks so highly of the dedicated school boards, administrators, parents, teachers and communities who have made high school graduation a top priority for our students.”