In the aftermath of No Child Left Behind, and nearly every state filing for a waiver, the next question on everyone’s mind is, what comes after NO Child Left Behind (NCLB)?
Recall the reason for the controversial law in the first place was the wide and desperate disparities in educational achievement for poor and minority students, as compared to their more affluent counterparts.
So what comes next? The House Education and Workforce committee has drafted a bill to overhaul the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (also known as NCLB). Highlights of the bill include:
1) guarantees that school districts with the greatest number of low-performing schools receive priority for funds if there is not enough money to accommodate all schools in the district
2) all parents and students have a school choice option, not just students attending the worst 5% of schools.
The word around the web is that the new bill is better, but there is still room for improvement. The Forum on Educational Accountability released a statement about the bill. A major concern of the FEA is the bill’s “over-reliance on testing” as an evaluation tool for all teacher. The bill proposes “what could become a unfunded mandate for states to create extensive evaluation systems, and requires significant use of students standardized test scores in that system.”
Testing should be used a tool, not a means to an end, and not as the sole evaluation tool for teachers. Students need help to achieve results, and teachers need help and tools to help students achieve results. No Child Held Back (NCHB) helps students, teachers, and districts achieve. How can we demand perfection from our teachers if we do not give them the tools they need to succeed? NCHB starts with teachers, and programs to increase teacher effectiveness, including methods for adjusting course materials to student’s optimal learning modalities.
Visit www.nochildheldback.org for more information, and you can download our white paper to find out more about how No Child Held Back is helping school’s achieve on their terms.