Kentucky Education Commissioner Stephen Pruitt Resigns
The Kentucky Board of Education has voted to accept the resignation of Education Commissioner Stephen Pruitt. The board's decision comes one day after Republican Gov. Matt Bevin replaced most of the board with new members. The appointments mean everyone on the board has now been chosen by Bevin, who took office in December 2015.
Wayne Lewis was named the interim commissioner with a salary of $150,000.
Pruitt has been commissioner since September 2015. Bevin said Tuesday before the board's vote he was unhappy with the state's recent decline in test scores but said the decision to keep Pruitt was up to the board.
Following the resignation the Kentucky Democratic Party released the following statement:
“If Gov. Bevin and the Republican majority were sincere about strengthening education for all of Kentucky students, they wouldn’t starve our local school districts and stack the Board of Education with pro-charter school appointees,” Brad Bowman, spokesperson for the Kentucky Democratic Party said. “Today, they have continued their war on public education. We can’t fill the achievement gap by widening the state’s funding gaps for our schools. Education Commissioner Dr. Stephen Pruitt’s resignation is just another step by this administration and the Republican majority to steal public money and funnel it into the hands of a for-profit industry.”