FRANKFORT, Ky. (WTVQ) – Kentucky received the fifth highest score in the nation on a new report card that assesses how well the state is serving its Black students at public four-year universities.
Issued Tuesday by The University of Southern California Race and Equity Center in Inside Higher Education, the new scorecard rated each public university on four equity metrics: Black student enrollment, Black student enrollment by gender, Black student completion and the ratio of Black students to Black faculty.
The University of Louisville was part of a three-way tie for the top grade in the nation, along with the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts and the University of California, San Diego.
Kentucky’s statewide equity index score is 2.36, which is the average of its university scores.
“This scorecard indicates that Kentucky has been intentional and focused on issues of equity, including closing achievement gaps of our African American students,” said Aaron Thompson, the Council’s executive vice president.
“While Kentucky should celebrate its high ranking, there is still so much work to be done. We will use this baseline score as an incentive to build better policies and practices to improve student outcomes moving forward.”
Approved in 2016, the Council’s Policy for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion is the most recent iteration of Kentucky’s decades-long efforts to boost enrollment and completions for underrepresented minority and low-income students. The policy provides a framework to increase enrollments and outcomes for diverse populations, create a more inclusive environment, and produce more culturally competent graduates.
Each of the public four-year universities and the colleges of the Kentucky Community and Technical College System have implemented diversity plans to drive continued success for these student populations. The plans are aligned to the Council’s policy and received Council approval.
Campuses report their diversity metrics to the Council. Additionally, the state’s new performance funding model incentivizes gap closings and degrees earned by underrepresented minorities and low-income students.
For more information on the Council’s diversity efforts, visit: http://cpe.ky.gov/ourwork/diversity.html.
To read the article in Inside Higher Education, go to https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2018/09/25/new-report-grades-states-public-universities-black-student-enrollment-representation.