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Relief from No Child Left Behind would be welcome

Posted: March 9, 2012 - 9:42am  |  Updated: March 9, 2012 - 9:44am

The state of Alaska is considering an application for a waiver from certain provisions of the No Child Left Behind Act, the federal law that requires standardized testing and reporting of Adequate Yearly Progress in public schools.

As has been argued since the measure was signed into law in 2002, No Child Left Behind's one-size-fits-all approach to education has never been a good fit for a place as diverse as Alaska, and a waiver from its provisions would bring welcome relief to school districts across the state, including here on the Kenai Peninsula.

The goals of No Child Left Behind are laudable -- raising achievement among the nation's students and closing the achievement gap between privileged and underprivileged student populations. Indeed, the law has had many positive effects, compelling school districts to focus on students who otherwise might slip through the cracks.

But there's always been a major flaw in the legislation: under the law, every student is expected to be "proficient" by 2014.

Again, the goal is laudable, we certainly want every student performing to his or her potential. But it's also an unrealistic expectation, and the consequences for not meeting the ever-increasing threshold of Adequate Yearly Progress can be severe. In addition to jeopardizing funding, schools can be labeled as failing, even if they're making progress from year to year.

"The negative side (of NCLB) is that it caused schools that don't quite make it to be viewed as failing when in fact they may be doing quite well," Kenai Peninsula Borough School District Superintendent Steve Atwater recently told the Clarion. "They've taken a big step forward, they just didn't make it over the bar."

To qualify for a waiver, a state must have its own standards for accountability in place -- and we certainly expect those standards to be rigorous. A spokesman for the Alaska Department of Education and Early Development said the state already is working on higher standards independent of the No Child Left Behind waiver process, and those standards could help in acquiring the waiver.

The state also would have to have a mechanism in place to assist schools not making the grade, and would need to find a way to link teacher evaluations with student test data.

In fact, these issues would have been better left to state and local governments to address in the first place. The state is on the right track in developing higher standards for education, and we encourage the Department of Education and governor to sign off on a waiver application, so that we might determine for ourselves if our progress in educating our children has been adequate.

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Jerry 03/11/12 - 08:51 pm
One must realize that the no

One must realize that the no child left behind Dream is not to educate OUR children, its to regulate & control children into a total subjection to Government.
The govt. has a Dream & it involves total control of everyones lives & how & what we teach OUR children is the main target.
This target is spreading like wildfire against those that home school their children & try to give a well balanced view of the CORRECT HISTORY of the world & everything that we see.
Government wants to replace True History with thier own line of BS & contorted version of History.

For an example lets take the Israeli, PLO issue, a fictional story of how the Jews are displacing a people called Palistinians.
Palistinians nation True History shows by the way there has never been a nation of Palestinians, but if ya push a lie long enough it becomes true eventually due to idiots that don't search out the Truth, but buy the lies.
On the other hand True History shows that the nation of Israel did exist for thousands of years & concured the land of Israel & city of Jerusalem. History shows many times how the Jewish people were dispearced & came back to their land.
In 1948 the Jews came back to their land & will never be driven out again, never.

As i said on another post concerning what Mark Twain said about the media & world news that we are allow to view in it's restricted subjects, articles, which all have a propaganda, agenda for the world governments plans.

Twain said, "If you don't read the news, then your Uninformed. If you do read the news, then your Misinformed."
Somethings remain True forever, and it's getting worse every day with this media aiding Govt. in their Total control Dream Act for all of us, and especially OUR children.

They could careless about OUR children, other than the desire to have total control of them & all of us & the best way to control is thru what is taught, forced & controled in the views of the World govts.

Norseman 03/12/12 - 07:48 am
Thank you Clarion for

Thank you Clarion for providing an ignore button!

Jerry 03/12/12 - 11:06 am
norseman it seems that this

norseman it seems that this ignore thing is one of your favorite actions, is it not?

Jesus still loves you, so have a GR8 day, and remember, Jesus also has a no child left behind plan, but many will ignore it as well.

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