Devin Katayama

Devin Katayama joined WFPL News in summer 2011. He adds to the newsroom a diverse perspective having lived and reported in major cities across the U.S. and spending time in Peru reporting on human trafficking. Devin earned the 2011 Studs Terkel Community Media Scholarship Award for his report on homeless youth in Chicago. He reports on education affairs in Kentucky and Indiana.


2:53 pm
Wed December 11, 2013

School Tax Revenue Varies Widely Between Rich And Poor Districts

  A non-partisan economic policy group has released a report showing large gaps in per-student funding among school districts that approved tax increases this year.

Around half of Kentucky school boards approved the maximum 4 % property tax increase to help fund public schools. That's partly because the state hasn’t raised per-pupil funding for a number of years. 

The Kentucky Center for Economic Policy paper shows that some districts like Southgate Independent Schools in northern Kentucky will receive an additional $200 more per student through property taxes. While other districts like Bath County, in eastern Kentucky, will only receive $24 more per student.

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10:54 am
Mon December 9, 2013

Survey: Kentuckians 'Undecided' On Charter Schools, but Favor Charter-Like Features

Originally published on Sun December 8, 2013 6:25 am

More than half of Kentuckians contacted for a new survey released this week say they’re undecided on whether the state’s public education system would improve with charter schools.

But a majority of the 501 voting households surveyed support more school options and certain characteristics that set charter schools apart from traditional public schools.

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2:09 pm
Thu December 5, 2013

Kentucky Education Commissioner on Funding: 'We Will See Pink Slips Like We’ve Never Seen Before'

Originally published on Thu December 5, 2013 8:53 am


Kentucky Education Commissioner Terry Holliday says teachers could faces layoffs and school districts could fail financially if education funding is not restored.

Holliday has pushed lawmakers to restore per-pupil funding levels to pre-recession levels. That request is more than $250 million dollars for the two-year budget that lawmakers will set when they return next year.

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3:07 pm
Tue November 26, 2013

KET Recieves $1.14 Million To Grow Early Childhood Resources

Originally published on Tue November 26, 2013 1:48 pm

A group of children sit in front of the television at Louisville Central Community Center’s Mini-Versity Child Development Center.

“What colors can you make?” the television asks.

Early childhood educators use the program as a prompt. The children then mix colored liquid into bags that contain plain dough-like material that will soon become yellow. Then green, when they drop in blue liquid.

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11:43 am
Mon November 18, 2013

Is Kentucky's Grocery Store Liquor Ban Antiquated? Court of Appeals To Decide.

Should grocery stores be allowed to sell these liquors?

Originally published on Mon November 18, 2013 2:59 pm

Should Kentucky grocery stores be allowed to sell liquor and wine?

That’s the topic of arguments to be  heard Tuesday by the U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati. 

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4:41 pm
Fri November 8, 2013

Student 'Growth' Measurement Concerns Some Kentucky Superintendents

Originally published on Fri November 8, 2013 12:52 pm

Some Kentucky superintendents have expressed concern with at least one indicator educators use to measure accountability, and education officials say tweaks to state’s new Unbridled Learning system could be forthcoming.

In the Kentucky Department of Education’s monthly webinar, Commissioner Terry Holliday said superintendents’ No. 1 concern is measuring student growth.

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3:23 pm
Thu November 7, 2013

ACT Can't Run 'Stress Tests' After Technical Glitches; Kentucky Considering Other Options

Originally published on Thu November 7, 2013 12:45 pm

The ACT testing company says it’s unable to run "stress tests" this fall that were requested by the Kentucky Department of Education following technical glitches with the test last spring.

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12:00 pm
Tue November 5, 2013

Kentucky's Child Abuse Panel Requesting $420,000 To Meet Goals

Retired judge Roger Crittenden is chair of Kentucky's Child Fatality and Near Fatality Review Panel.

Originally published on Tue November 5, 2013 10:41 am

An independent Kentucky panel in charge of reviewing child abuse cases is requesting $420,000 from the state’s budget to perform its duties.

The Child Fatality and Near Fatality Review Panel was created following criticism of accountability and transparency in the Cabinet for Health and Family Services, which deals with child abuse cases.

The panel—which consists of volunteer professionals ranging from law enforcement to child advocates—has reviewed dozens of cases, but the workload is heavy, says panel chair and retired judge Roger Crittenden.

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10:06 am
Wed October 30, 2013

Kentucky State Police Offer Training Program For 'Live Shooter' Incidents in Schools

Originally published on Tue October 29, 2013 2:04 pm

Kentucky State Police have launched a new program to help train school officials on how to respond when gunshots are fired on campus.

The active shooter program was developed by a number of stakeholders over the past several months and police say it’s a direct response to shootings at Connecticut’s Sandy Hook Elementary School last December.

KSP spokesman Paul Blanton says schools can select from four participation levels in the program, ranging from simple local district visits and discussions to live role-playing seminars that include the firing of simulated shoots.

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6:34 am
Thu October 24, 2013

Kentucky Selected For Two-Year Pilot To Improve Teacher Preparation Programs

Originally published on Thu October 24, 2013 5:42 am

Kentucky is among seven states that will participate in a two-year pilot program to improve teacher training programs and help the state’s higher education system better align with reforms at the K-12 level.

It’s not just a conversation happening in Kentucky.

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