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For the past 18 years, educators in Kentucky have had their feet held to the proverbial fire.
As the years have passed, the fire got a little hotter.
By the year 2014, school districts in Kentucky had a goal of 100 percent proficiency for their students in the Commonwealth Accountability Testing System.
As of 2008, no Bullitt County school had reached the magic mark across the board. Few in Kentucky had met their goal with just six more years to go.
However, there is no need to worry because after years of discontent, lawmakers have killed the CATS program.
Education reform remains alive and kicking. CATS is dead.
State education officials must now devise a better mousetrap to test and assess students in Kentucky. There is no problem with that approach.
The only concern is that after years of looking annually at the test results - and comparing them to others in the district and in the state - there may not be a way to gauge the progress made.
Bullitt County, although test scores may not always show it, has tried to be innovative. From smaller class sizes in the early grades to implementing full-day kindergarten without state funding, Bullitt County has tried to make strides.
The CATS scores are slowly but surely rising. How high local students would rise will never be known.
We don’t have a problem with coming up with a new testing program. The intent should always be student learning.
We know students are learning much more at an earlier age than ever before.
Our only concern is that the emphasis on student learning won’t falter. We are sure that will not be a problem.