Normally the only news I get out of Kentucky is the latest variant in the appropriately named “Kentucky Waterfall”. Better known locally as the Mullet. On Tuesday that changed when the Kentucky Senate voted unanimously to approve a measure that would allow requests from K-12 students to be given a “supplemental school year” to retake courses or grade levels in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. The measure could also result in students receiving an extra year of athletic eligibility if they meet current age restrictions. Under the proposal, the decision of whether to give students the supplemental year would be left up to local school boards. But the decision would have to apply uniformly for all requests. The bill will now move to the Kentucky House for a vote.
This brings with it more questions than answers: There’s a part of me that totally understands this and even applauds it to some degree. These kids have endured a hellacious year and had some of the best memories they’d ever make taken away. Some have lost entire seasons of recruiting opportunities, so why not let them have an opportunity to regain what has been lost through no fault of their own?
On the other hand, what about the incoming crop of high school freshmen who could potentially be forced to compete with a 5th year “super senior” for a spot on the HS roster? What about the Sophomore that worked all year knowing they’d be getting their chance this year. They’ve lost out on a season just like the seniors. Yet, they also could struggle physically to compete with what should be a college freshmen. After-all, how much weight would a college recruiter place on the competition level, given the circumstances?
How many 18 year olds are really going to trade in a year of freedom to stay at home and have another crack at high school glory? Would you be interested in your state taking up an option like this?
As you can imagine, this one left us with more questions than answers. It will be interesting to see how the Kentucky House weighs all of these questions as they'll soon make the decision. As alway, FUT411 will continue tracking tracking this one it progresses.