U.S. Education Secretary visits Fern Creek High School
Duncan says positive change is happening at the state level too.
"I'm always looking at who's getting better faster," he said during a press conference at JCTC later in the day. "I'm interested in growth and gain. And by multiple measures, Kentucky is getting better faster than vast majority of states."
Governor Beshear joined the local, state and federal leaders Thursday afternoon.
"In 2011, when we started measuring our college and career readiness rate it was at 38 percent. Only 38 percent of our high school graduates were college or career ready. Today, we've got from 38 percent to 62 percent," Beshear said as an example of progress the state has made.
He pointed to Senate Bill 1, Common Core and new science standards as some of the things that have worked. Beshear says a renewed waiver from provisions of No Child Left Behind allows the state to be flexible.
Secretary Duncan says the real challenge moving forward will be keeping up the momentum.
"Tremendous progress. Not 100 percent yet. Not where we need to go. But I'm just so thankful for what Kentucky has done, not just for young people in the state but for the example for the rest of the nation," Duncan said.
After leaving JCTC, Duncan headed to duPont Manual High School to meet with local teachers.