Kentucky: Council on Postsecondary Education

GEAR UP Kentucky

GEAR UP Kentucky 3.0

The Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education (CPE), was awarded $26,922,000 over a six-year funding cycle to implement Kentucky’s third statewide project to increase the number of students who graduate from high school and enroll in postsecondary education.


To meet this ambitious goal, GEAR UP Kentucky 3.0 will work with our partners in classrooms, school systems, and communities to establish/support the following five attributes of a college-going culture:


Aspiration — School setting that inspires and supports students’ college and career goals. All students are assured access to advising and activities linking school, personality, and aptitude to career and college.

Rigor — College and career success is intricately linked to academic preparation in the school. All students are assured opportunities and support to acquire core knowledge and skills that provides the best chance for success in college.

Expectation — School provides clear indicators of college readiness focused on both college knowledge and college-ready coursework to close the gap between aspiration and college-going. Students will be advised on their progress toward college readiness and provided targeted support.

Accountability — School makes appropriate decisions about student readiness and school improvement using multi-dimensional data to create a complete student, cohort, and school profile; uses data to gauge progress, and effectively structures interventions.

Sustainability—An environment in which school focuses on transforming to a college-going culture to create systemic change.



GUK 3.0 serves 30 middle schools and their corresponding high schools in 22 counties across the state. These schools are primarily located in rural areas with a few exceptions in the Northern Kentucky, Lexington and Louisville urban regions. Using a cohort model (serving every student in a grade), GUK 3.0 will serve approximately 10,000 students in three cohorts over the project period.


GEAR UP Ky 3.0 Framework for a College-Going Culture

GUK 3.0 will provide three categories of services direct services for students and parents, school improvement services, and statewide services


Direct Services for Students & Parents

Student and parent services will be delivered through five research-based strategies:

(a) GEAR UP-2-Learn (learning skills);

(b) GEAR UP-2-Success (comprehensive academic advising);

(c) GEAR UP-2-College and Careers (college planning and financial literacy);

(d) GEAR UP-2-Focus (near-peer mentoring); and

(e) GEAR UP-2-Campus (summer enrichment program).


School Improvement Services

(a) Education Planning and Assessment Services


(c) Technical Assistance

(d) GEAR UP Institute for a College-Going Culture

(e) Data-Driven Decision-Making

(F) Professional Development


Statewide Services

(a) College Access and Outreach Media Campaign (KnowHow2GO

(b) Kentucky GEAR UP Alliance (a collaboration of all the GEAR UP programs in the state)

(c) Parent and Community Development Services (Parent and Community engagement)


State & National Partners

Organizations partnering with the CPE to implement the project include:

  • Kentucky Virtual Campus,
  • Kentucky Broadcasting Association,
  • Kentucky Department of Education,
  • Kentucky Higher Education Assistance,
  • LAMPO (Dave Ramsey’s Foundations in Personal Finance),
  • ACT & ACT Data Consortium, 
  •  Premier Publications,
  • The Collaborative for Teaching and Learning,
  • Lexington Herald-Leader Newspaper,
  • The Princeton Review,
  • KnowHow2GOKy,
  • Kentucky Adult Education,
  • University of Kentucky,
  • Western Kentucky University,
  • Eastern Kentucky University, and
  • Morehead State University


Yvonne Lovell
Council on Postsecondary Education
Phone: (502) 573-1555 ext. 136


Last Updated 4/29/2014