Kentucky’s new accountability model, that is required to align with the expectations of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), will be a major paradigm shift from the high-stakes testing of the No Child Left Behind era. The shareholder engagement process that the department of education implemented through the KyEdListens town hall meetings, emails and social media campaign is a national model. That process resulted in a number of new education accountability expectations that will begin in the 2018-2019 school year. The product of that process is called the Kentucky Consolidated State Plan, the expectations of the plan elevate the importance of the whole child through subjects like health education and physical education. Kentucky’s plan prioritizes these areas through the Access and Opportunity portion of the state consolidated plan, shown in the images below.
Thanks to the ESSA definition for a well-rounded subject, health education and physical education are also now eligible for federal funding from title programs like professional development (Title II), safe and healthy/well-rounded (Title IV Part A) and after-school programs (Title IV Part B). However please note that Congressional appropriations for ESSA has been well below the level of what was originally authorized when ESSA was passed. Originally Congress authorized Title IV Part A at $1.6 billion, but current FY appropriations was only $400 million. State education agencies then receive funding based on their Title I population, so Kentucky received just under $6 million. Kentucky chose to keep a formula based funding, as equity was a driving force behind ESSA passage, so that all local education agencies received some funding. This has resulted in a much smaller funding amount to school districts. The following link has the district Title IV Part A allocations for the current fiscal year for all 173 public school districts KDE FY18 Title IV Part A allocations. For districts, that receive more than $30,000 the district must follow a needs assessment process to allocate the funding between 1.)Well-rounded education 2.) Safe and Healthy Schools and 3.) Technology. For districts that receive less than $30,000, it is the district’s discretion on how to allocate the funding. Additional guidance can be found on KDE’s website: https://education.ky.gov/school/Pages/Title-IV%2C-Part-A.aspx
State and Federal Requirements for Local School Wellness Policies:
All elementary and secondary school students in Kentucky are to receive physical education and health education instruction in accordance with the Kentucky Academic Standards and meeting the minimum unit requirements for high school graduation set forth in 704 KAR 003:305.
Local boards of education and school-based decision-making councils determine the curriculum to be used for teaching the Kentucky Academic Standards, the hiring of qualified personnel and the allocation of instructional time. More information about school-based decision-making councils can be found here.
Section 11 of KRS 160.345 addresses the role of SBDM councils for school wellness policy including the requirement that K-5 schools have a plan for moderate-to-vigorous physical activity. KRS 158.856 requires that all school districts annual complete a nutrition and physical activity assessment.
LEGAL REQUIREMENTS SUMMARY for KRS 158.856/KRS 160.3455 are as follows:
· Post a report to the district website about the nutrition and physical activity environments for schools within the district at least 60 days prior to January 31.
· Discussion of the findings of the nutrition report and physical activity report by each local board and the board seeking public comments during a publicly advertised special board meeting or at the next regularly scheduled board meeting following the release of the nutrition and physical activity reports.
· By January 31 of each year, the local board of education holding an advertised public forum to present a plan to improve school nutrition and physical activities in the school district.
· By May 1 of each year, each school district compiling a summary of findings and recommendations and submitting the summary to the KBE.