Department of Highways, District 11
TRANSPORTATION CABINET PROMOTES COMMON WEALTH OF KNOWLEDGE ABOUT KENTUCKY GEOGRAPHY-BELL COUNTY
The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet began distribution of Kentucky Highway maps to elementary schools all across the Commonwealth on January 17, 2006. The maps will be used as reference materials in school libraries and for geography and social studies classes.
“We have an abundance of 2004 and 2005 maps in storage, and, we view this as a golden opportunity to contribute to the expansion of horizons for thousands of young Kentuckians,” said Transportation Cabinet Secretary, Bill Nighbert. “When a child becomes familiar with names and places and the various routes that connect them, that child’s curiosity can grow into a thirst for more knowledge about Kentucky.”
Gene Wilhoit, Commissioner of the Department of Education, thanked the Transportation Cabinet for choosing to make these maps available to elementary school students. “Frankly, we are pleased that, when the Transportation Cabinet realized they had surplus highway maps at the end of the calendar year, their first thought was to use them to support education!”
When the determination was made that there was a large supply of surplus maps, Secretary Nighbert contacted Education Cabinet officials, who, in turn, invited school principals and teachers to e-mail their requests for maps to the Transportation Cabinet. “This is a shining example of how various agencies of state government can work together to improve student achievement,” added Education Cabinet Secretary, Virginia Fox. “Having readily accessible maps for so many children will lead them in the right direction to make many new discoveries in life.”
Commissioner of Tourism, Randy Fiveash, sees this project as a potential long range boon to tourism in the state. “These maps will be great learning tools for the students,” said Commissioner Fiveash. “There will also be the added benefit of the maps becoming tourism tools, which will show the students and their families the numerous potential vacation opportunities available in Kentucky. We also want to commend Secretary Nighbert and the Transportation Cabinet for their decision to provide Kentucky maps to Kentucky schools.”
Transportation Cabinet representatives from the Central Office in Frankfort and from District Offices all around the state fanned out across Kentucky to begin delivery of the maps. Sandy Rudder, Public Information Officer for the Manchester District 11 office, delivered requested maps to Mr. George Thompson, Bell County Superintendent and Mr. Darryl Wilder, Superintendent of the Middlesboro Independent Schools on January 24, 2006. To date, the Cabinet has received 532 e-mail map requests from teachers, principals and superintendents from every area of the Commonwealth.