Governor Ernie Fletcher’s Communications Office
Governor Fletcher Awards $3.42 Million to Clay County School System

Press Release Date:  Friday, January 05, 2007  
Contact Information:  Jodi Whitaker

Michael Goins

Funds will be used for renovations and additions to local elementary school

FRANKFORT, Ky. – Governor Ernie Fletcher today presented a check for $3,421,080 to the Clay County School System. The funds, which come from the School Facilities Construction Commission (SFCC), will pay for renovations and additions at Hacker Elementary School in Manchester.

“An investment in our schools is an investment in our children and their future,” Governor Fletcher said. “It is imperative that all Kentucky students receive the best education possible, and today’s award will help the students of Hacker Elementary School and Clay County have a school environment that will enhance their learning experience.”

“On behalf of our board, I want to express my thanks to Governor Fletcher for awarding Hacker Elementary School SFCC funds for our renovation and expansion project,” said Clay County Superintendent Doug Adams. “This award enables us to continue our facilities renovations to bring our school system up to the standards that are equal to those found anywhere in the world.”

The funding for Hacker Elementary School is part of the $150 million allotted in the 2006-2008 Executive Budget to the SFCC to be used for construction, renovations and improvements to local schools across the commonwealth. $75 million of that is earmarked for school districts under the Urgent Need funds. Overall, nearly 44 percent of Kentucky’s $18 billion budget is allotted for improvements in education on the K-12 level over the next two years.

“Our state set the bar for education with the passage of the Kentucky Education Reform Act,” said Education Cabinet Secretary Laura E. Owens. “We must continue our investment in education as a strong building block to bringing new opportunities to our commonwealth.”

“This is a significant amount of money being put into Hacker Elementary School to raise the quality of education for their students,” said Sen. Robert Stivers (R-Manchester).  “I want to express my thanks to Governor Fletcher for making this investment into the Clay County School System.”

“I’m very appreciative to the SFCC for providing the well needed funds for Hacker Elementary School,” said State Representative Tim Couch (R- Hyden). “These funds will make sure that Hacker Elementary school will receive some long-overdue upgrades in providing a high level of learning.”

First created in 1985 by KRS 157.611, the SFCC was established to help local school districts throughout Kentucky meet the school construction and education technology needs of the state by operating in a manner that ensures an equitable distribution of funds based on unmet needs. Since the passage of KERA in 1990, school facilities have been funded by the commonwealth based on district size, wealth and need among Kentucky’s 175 school districts. 

During the event, state officials also recognized the accomplishments of four Save the Children literacy program sites in Clay County: Hacker Elementary, Paces Creek Elementary, Horse Creek Elementary and Big Creek Elementary. The partnership among Kentucky’s executive branch, its legislative branch and Save the Children provides programs to help students improve their reading skills.

“Thanks to that partnership, Clay County schools have made significant strides in improving educational opportunities for their students,” said Cabinet for Health and Family Services Secretary Mark D. Birdwhistell.