Kentucky AG Issues Opinion On Nepotism

The Kentucky attorney general’s office has issued an opinion after studying state nepotism statutes as they apply to the hiring of certain school teachers.

The Kentucky Education Reform Act of 1990, or KERA, prohibits school principals from hiring their spouses or relatives.

But a question has arisen as to whether the prohibition applies to ‘itinerant’ or ‘district-wide’ teachers hired by superintendants, instead of principals.

The attorney general’s office, in an Open Records opinion sought by the Educational Professional Standards Board, says the prohibition does apply.

The AG’s office says the law makes no distinction between who does the hiring, but is clear in its intent to prohibit nepotism.

Therefore, the five page opinion says, certified employees may not be assigned to work in a school where the employee is a relative of the principal, regardless of the teacher’s ‘itinerant’ or “district-wide’ status.

By Tony McVeigh

Veteran broadcast journalist Tony McVeigh has been covering Kentucky politics since 1986, reporting for Clear Channel Communications before joining Kentucky Public Radio in 2004. His stories are aired by seven KPR affiliates, whose signals blanket the Commonwealth and parts of surrounding states. McVeigh began his broadcasting career at WRFC in Athens, Georgia, while earning a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism from the University of Georgia. He has extensive anchor/reporter experience, including stints with South Carolina Network and Georgia Radio News Service in Atlanta. In 2007 and 2008, McVeigh was named Best Radio Reporter in the Kentucky Associated Press Awards. He also picked up consecutive AP Awards for Best Political Coverage. McVeigh won four Kentucky AP Awards in 2009, six in 2010 - including Best Political Coverage and Best Hard News Feature - and three in 2011. His coverage of the 2007 Kentucky governor's race topped the Political Reporting category of the Society of Professional Journalists Green Eyeshade Awards of 2008. In 2009, McVeigh placed second in Courts and Law Reporting in the Atlanta-based competition for journalists in 11 Southern states. McVeigh is also the proud recipient of an Individual Liberty Award from the Kentucky Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. The Brunswick, Georgia, native is a die-hard UGA football fan who enjoys photography, astronomy, live music, hiking Kentucky's Red River Gorge and exploring the state's beautiful back roads. McVeigh and his big, fat, black cat Simon, reside in Frankfort, KY.