U.S. Department of Education Officials to Visit Kentucky to Learn How Race to the Top Grants are Helping to Make a Difference in Rural Schools

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Deputy Assistant Secretary for Rural Outreach John White will learn how the U.S. Department of Education's Race to the Top grant program is making a difference in rural schools in Kentucky during his visit on Wednesday, March 27. White, along with the Department's Teaching Ambassador Fellows Marciano Gutierrez, Cynthia Apalinski and Michael Humphreys, will meet with Kentucky education officials to learn more about how federal investments in K-12 and community college programs are being used to prepare rural youth and adults for college and in-demand career fields.

Kentucky is one of 29 states using Race to the Top funds to support ambitious yet achievable plans for implementing coherent, compelling, and comprehensive education reform. Kentucky has been awarded RTTT state and district-level grants.

White, Gutierrez, Apalinski and Humphreys will meet with Kentucky's Race to the Top staff to learn about the impact of Race to the Top on statewide reforms, particularly in rural areas. They also will visit Green River Regional Educational Cooperative in Bowling Green and meet with 37 superintendents whose school districts are part of the cooperative. Green River’s RTTT District grant serves 24 rural districts.

In the afternoon, the Department of Education team will visit Hart County High School in Munfordville to learn how RTTT district funds are supporting efforts to personalize learning in rural areas. The trip will conclude with a visit to Jefferson Community and Technical College in Louisville to meet with students, staff and community partners of the Health Pathways program, which is supported by a Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training (TAACCT) grant that is administered by the U.S. Labor Department in coordination with the U.S. Department of Education. TAACCT grants are helping to increase the number of workers who attain degrees, certificates and other industry-recognized credentials. The program underscores President Obama's commitment to help every American have at least one year of postsecondary education. The program also furthers the President's efforts to ensure that by 2020 the United States once again has the highest proportion of college graduates in the world.