About the Initiative

Kentucky Work Ready Communities is the most comprehensive and innovative Work Ready program in the U.S.

A Kentucky Work Ready Community certification is a measure of a county’s workforce quality. It is an assurance to business and industry that the community is committed to providing the highly-skilled workforce required in today’s competitive global economy.

There are two levels of certification – counties can apply to be a Kentucky Work Ready Community or a Kentucky Work Ready Community in Progress.

On behalf of the Governor, the Kentucky Workforce Innovation Board certifies counties as Kentucky Work Ready when they meet the following criteria:

  • A high school graduation rate of at least 88.9% with a plan to raise to 98% by 2022.
  • A plan in place to increase the number of Kentucky Skills Certificates and Career Readiness Certificates.
  • Demonstrated support from the following stakeholders: economic development, elected officials, education, workforce development, and business and industry.
  • The percentage of working age (18-64) adults with at least a two-year degree must be at 45% with a plan to increase to 45% within three years. Less than 15% of working age adult are without a high school diploma or GED, with a plan to reach and maintain 10%.
  • A plan is in place to increase the number of Work Ethic Seal enrollments.
  • A sustainable program in place to address work ethic/soft skills development (attendance/punctuality, communication, teamwork, leadership, critical thinking, etc.) and credentialing for both the secondary and postsecondary adult populations.
  • A plan and system in place to increase the number of Licensures and Apprenticeships in the county.
  • Objectively demonstrate execution/progress engagement of Disabled, Veteran, Ex-Offender and Medicaid populations.
  • High-speed internet service must be available to 90% of housing units.


Counties Work Ready Status

TENCO Counties

As of December 2017, the following counties in the TENCO Workforce Development Area are:

Certified Work Ready
  • Boyd
  • Fleming
  • Greenup
  • Mason
  • Montgomery
  • Rowan
Certified Work Ready in Progress
  • Bath
  • Lewis
Submitted letter of intent
  • Bracken
  • Robertson