Saturday, September 14, 2002

Legislator: Make Ky. State part of another school


School plagued by scandal after scandal, he says

By The Associated Press

        FRANKFORT - A state senator says Kentucky State University's financial and academic problems may merit taking another look at an old idea of making it part of another school.

        Other legislators said KSU deserves to stand on its own and one questioned whether racism played a part in the most recent debate.

        State Sen. Dan Seum, R-Louisville, said KSU has the highest amount of state funding per student of Kentucky's eight public universities, the lowest teacher-student ratio and performs the worst, facts that have long been the case.

        During a meeting of the General Assembly's Program Review and Investigations Committee, Mr. Seum said that if conditions don't improve at KSU, the state's only historically black university, it might be time for further action, including closing the university and putting it under the University of Kentucky.

        “There's been scandal after scandal after scandal,” Mr. Seum said. “Others are inclined to think what I'm thinking.”

        Rep. Gippy Graham, D-Frankfort, chairman of the review committee, said KSU's problems weren't severe enough to do away with the institution.

        “KSU will stand,” Mr. Graham said. “KSU will go on in my opinion. Our purpose is to help it get going in the right direction.”

        Sen. Gerald Neal, D-Louisville, is not a member of the committee, but is an alumnus of KSU and the Senate's only black member.

        “I wonder if there are racial overtones,” said Mr. Neal, who stressed he didn't want to jump to conclusions about motivation.

        This isn't the first time such a proposal has surfaced. In 1981, the Council on Higher Education (now the Council on Postsecondary Education) considered a proposal to turn KSU into a two-year community college operated by UK. That proposal failed unanimously when the full council voted on it after a public outcry from KSU supporters who contended the university's problems were a product of neglect by the state.

        William Wilson, chairman of the KSU board of regents, scoffed at the idea.

        “If this were any other institution that had problems, they wouldn't think of moving it under another banner,” Mr. Wilson said, somewhat angrily, after the hearing. “Scandals are at every university.”

        KSU had come under fire for audits showing mismanagement of university funds, while the school had a 36 percent pass rate on the national teacher certification exam this year.

        In addition, the school has come under investigation from the U.S. Department of Education and the FBI.

        In June, the board fired controversial President George Reid, in part because of his use of public funds for private expenditures.

       



Driving on Tylersville Road? Pack a lunch
2 suspects rooted out as tree cutters
Local crops small, wilted
Patrol focuses on teen driver
Ravenous coyotes hunted
Send us questions about Mason, Deerfield Twp.
Golf aided Bill Backs' drive to career in law
Jews unite to reflect
Latina urges bridge building
Photographer can leave prison
Student from UC to be on game show
Tristate A.M. Report
CROWLEY: Political notebook
GUTIERREZ: Michael Carneal
MCNUTT: Neighborhoods
RADEL: Toast to bakeries
Man indicted in stabbing and shooting
Mason reviews sewer bills after complaints of charges
Meeting on project encourages residents
Queen Anne house demolished
Violent week adds shooting
Warren annexation fight ends
Clinton: Hagan needs $2M more to beat Taft
Ohio chief justice objects to proposed drug-treatment law
Candidate under fire over gay fund-raiser
Covington points out its neighborhoods
E-mail angers Covington mayor
Emergency teams to get $5 million
Kenton Co. boasts DUI convictions
Kentucky News Briefs
- Legislator: Make Ky. State part of another school
School districts warned of imposter
School settles suit over flag T-shirt
Senate candidates spar over Transpark