Kentucky Education Commissioner Terry Holliday says he appreciates the focus on student learning in the new Jefferson County Teachers Association contract, and the state will monitor its impact on low-performing schools in the district.

Holliday was critical of the union contract prior to negotiations, which began in early June. He previously said there were instances where teachers at low-performing schools would not follow certain turnaround efforts because of the contract provisions. 

Under state law, low-achieving schools’ turnaround plans supersede the union contract. Language affirming this mandate was written into the new contract.

Below is Holliday’s response to WFPL’s questions regarding the new contract:

“I appreciate JCTA and JCPS putting the focus on student learning.  Now that the contract has been approved, we will look at its impact on low-performing schools in the district and check with principals to see whether concerns that were previously raised have been addressed. 

The next step will come this fall when accountability data is released.  We will be reviewing school performance at that time and hope to see that these schools are meeting or exceeding their targeted student outcomes, annual measurable objectives and are on course for continuous improvement.”