Taylor County School Board approves state-mandated civics exam

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Senate Bill 156 was approved during the 2017 Kentucky General Assembly

By Zac Oakes


The main topic of Tuesday night’s meeting of the Taylor County Board of Education centered on the announcement that Superintendent Roger Cook will retire at the end of June.

However, that was not the only topic discussed. The board approved several items of business before Cook’s announcement.

In other news from the meeting:

The board approved the state-mandated civics test that was legislated by the Kentucky General Assembly during the 2017 legislative session. The bill, which was co-sponsored by 16th District Senator Max Wise (R-Campbellsville), creates a chapter in KRS 158 “to require all public high school students to pass a civics test in order to receive a regular diploma,” according to the Kentucky Legislative Research Commission.

The test will be implemented beginning next school year, according to a version of the bill publicly available through the Kentucky LRC. The test will be composed of 100 questions, which will be drawn from questions that are used on United States citizenship tests administered to those seeking to become naturalized citizens.

In order to pass the test, students must answer at least 60 percent of the questions correctly. There is no limit on the number of times the students can take the test.

The final bill passed through the Kentucky Senate by a 36-2 vote, and passed through the House of Representatives by a 79-15 margin. Rep. John “Bam” Carney (R-Campbellsville) also supported the bill.

The board also approved the first reading of the 2018-2019 school calendar. This is the first time that school districts have been required to have more than one reading, according to Cook. He added that the 2018-2019 school calendar is very similar to this year’s calendar.

The board approved a motion for the Taylor County Intermediate School Junior Beta Club to travel to the state convention in Lexington from Jan. 31- Feb. 2, as well as approving the district’s Comprehensive District Improvement Plan (CDIP).

Before adjourning the meeting, the board went into executive session to discuss possible pending litigation, according to Cook.

All board members were present for the meeting, with the exception of Jan Burkhead.

Personnel Report

Resignations- Laura Mattingly, Katie Milby

New Hires- Roger Blair and Carol Watson, bus drivers

Substitutes- Kirby Gribbins, Michael Akin (bus driver), Tony Ford (mechanic), and Danny Kemp (bus driver)