Ky. education commissioner defends trips

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) - Kentucky's education commissioner says no ethics violations occurred when he took two international trips with an education foundation whose related business won a lucrative state contract.

Terry Holliday, Kentucky commissioner of education, said in a statement Wednesday that he had been open about his trips to China and Brazil with the Pearson Foundation. Holliday said he used the trips to see how other countries address the same economic and educational challenges as Kentucky.

Holliday was responding to a New York Times article that questioned whether the trips affected the state's decision to award a $7 million contract to NCS Pearson Inc. to devise and administer assessment tests used to measure student progress in public schools.

The commissioner wrote about his China trip in a May 20 blog post on the state Department of Education website.

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