Kentucky school districts

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K-12 Education in Kentucky
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Education facts
State Superintendent: Terry Holliday
Number of students: 681,987[1]
Number of teachers: 41,860
Teacher/pupil ratio: 1:16.3
Number of school districts: 194
Number of schools: 1,565
Graduation rate: 82%[2]
Per-pupil spending: $9,309[3]
See also
Kentucky Department of EducationList of school districts in KentuckyKentuckySchool boards portal
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Education policy project
Public education in the United States
Public education in Kentucky
Glossary of education terms

Kentucky is home to 1,565 schools and 681,987 K-12 students.[4]

Quick facts

State school administrators

  • State Board of Education
    • Robert King, President, Ex-Officio
    • Roger L. Marcum, Chair, Supreme Court District 3
    • Jonathan Parrent, Supreme Court District 1
    • William Twyman, Supreme Court District 2
    • Mary Gwen Wheeler, Supreme Court District 4
    • Nawanna Barton Privett, Supreme Court District 5
    • Vacant, Supreme Court District 6
    • Grayson Boyd, Supreme Court District 7
    • Trevor Bonnstetter, At-Large Member
    • Leo Calderon, At-Large Member
    • Vacant, At-Large Member
    • David K. Karem, At-Large Member


The following table displays the state's top 10 school districts by total student enrollment.

Student enrollment
1.) Jefferson County Public Schools
2.) Fayette County Public Schools
3.) Boone County Schools
4.) Hardin County Schools
5.) Kenton County School District
6.) Warren County Public Schools
7.) Bullitt County Public Schools
8.) Oldham County Schools
9.) Daviess County Public Schools
10.) Madison County Schools


See also: Demographic information for all students in all 50 states

The following table displays the ethnic distribution of students in Kentucky as reported in the National Center for Education Statistics Common Core of Data for 2011-2012.[5]

Demographic information for Kentucky's K-12 public school system
Ethnicity Students State Percentage United States Percentage**
American Indian 960 0.14% 1.10%
Asian 9,344 1.37% 4.68%
African American 73,380 10.76% 15.68%
Hawaiian Nat./Pacific Isl. students 531 0.08% 0.42%
Hispanic 29,457 4.32% 24.37%
White 553,406 81.15% 51.21%
Two or more 14,909 2.19% 2.54%
**Note: This is the percentage of all students in the United States that are reported to be of this ethnicity.

In the news

Grants for raising compulsory education age

In 2014, the Kentucky Department of Education stated that they would be making $10,000 grants available for school districts that raise the compulsory education age from 16 to 18. The raise in age is meant to prevent students from dropping out of school. According to the terms of the grant, 75 percent of the money must benefit programs targeting at-risk elementary and middle school students. After that is used, the remainder may go toward dropout prevention at the high school level. Under Kentucky Senate Bill 97, which was approved in 2013, once 55 percent of school districts in the state approve the change, the rest will have to do so as well.[6]

State law

Common Core

Common Core, or the Common Core State Standards Initiative, is an American education initiative that outlines quantifiable benchmarks in English and mathematics at each grade level from kindergarten through high school. The Kentucky Department of Education adopted the standards on February 10, 2010. Full implementation took place during the 2011-2012 academic year.[7][8]

School board composition

School board members are elected by residents of the school district. School boards in Kentucky are composed of five members that serve four-year terms. The exception is Jefferson County Public Schools which has seven members. Elections are held in even-numbered years and the terms are staggered so that the terms of not more than three members of a local board expire at the same time. Any vacancy on the board must be filled by the commissioner of education within 90 days after the vacancy occurs.[9]

District types

Kentucky is made up of county school districts and independent school districts. In county school districts, members are elected from divisions, while independent school districts members are elected at-large.[9][10]

Term limits

Delaware does not impose statewide term limits on school board members.[11]

School board elections

Upcoming elections

See also: Kentucky school board elections, 2015

No top enrollment districts in Kentucky are scheduled to hold elections in 2015.

Path to the ballot

According to Kentucky state law, the following qualifications are necessary to become a school board member:[9]

  • Be at least 24 years old.
  • Have been a citizen of Kentucky for at least three years preceding her election and be a voter of the district she is elected to represent.
  • Have completed at least the 12th grade, been issued a GED certificate or been elected prior to July 14, 1990 with no lapse in service.
  • Have signed an affidavit under penalty of perjury certifying completion of the 12th grade or the equivalent as determined by passage of the 12th-grade equivalency examination regulated by the state board of education, and have filed an affidavit with the nominating petition.
  • Does not hold a state office requiring the constitutional oath and is not a member of the General Assembly.
  • Does not hold or discharge the duties of any civil or political office, deputyship, or agency under city or county government.
  • Is not, at the time of his election, directly or indirectly involved in the sale to the board of anything, including services, paid for with school funds.
  • Has not been removed from a board of education for cause.
  • Does not have a father, mother, brother, sister, husband, wife, son, daughter, aunt, uncle, son-in-law or daughter-in-law employed by the school district. This does not apply to a board member holding office on July 13, 1990 whose relative was not initially hired by the district during the board member’s tenure.

See also

External links

Suggest a link


  1. National Center for Education Statistics, "Table 2. Number of operating public schools and districts, state enrollment, teacher and pupil/teacher ratio by state: School year 2011–12," accessed March 18, 2014
  2. ED Data Express, "State Tables Report," accessed March 17, 2014 The site includes this disclaimer: "States converted to an adjusted cohort graduation rate [starting in the 2010-2011 school year], which may or may not be the same as the calculation they used in prior years. Due to the potential differences, caution should be used when comparing graduation rates across states."
  3. United States Census Bureau, "Public Education Finances: 2011," accessed March 18, 2014
  4. National Center for Education Statistics, "State Education Data Profiles," accessed August 16, 2013
  5. United States Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, "Common Core of Data (CCD), State Nonfiscal Public Elementary/Secondary Education Survey, 2011-2012," accessed May 7, 2014
  6., "Grants being offered to Ky. schools that raise compulsory education age," July 9, 2014
  7. Common Core State Standards Initiative, "Core Standards in your State," accessed June 12, 2014
  8. Kentucky Department of Education, "Common Core Standards Resources," accessed June 17, 2014
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 Kentucky School Board Association, "Local Boards of Education," accessed July 11, 2014
  10. United States Census Bureau, "Kentucky," accessed July 11, 2014
  11. Kentucky Legislature, "Kentucky Law," accessed July 11, 2014