Is the White House doing making the right decision with no child left behind?
Yesterday, the Obama administration announced that 10 states were getting waivers for the no child left behind act of 2002, citing the goal of getting all children up to par with math and reading by 2014 is unattainable. Not all states will be able to get this waiver.
Hello?! Here in Florida, there are rural schools, who are in dire need of funding just to stay alive. Some have predominantly minority populations who have literally been isolated and forgotten. Because of this misconceived program they have been punished and fined. Teachers have been fired instead of supported with more training. They don't need to be beat down, they need to be lifted up.
It's a start, at least. I'm in Georgia, one of the states getting waivers, and my wife teaches in the public school system. She feels that the particular measures adopted here will make things slightly worse by increasing the marginalization of kids at the bottom achievement levels. (I hope I'm paraphrasing her concerns correctly.)
But "No Child" was always inherently unworkable. The only way to get every child to grade level was to 'dumb down' grade level to the lowest common denominator. The kids with the lowest capacity deserve an education (and it is in society's interest to provide it to them so that they can contribute the most possible for them), but the way to do that is not to force them to attempt things which they are not actually capable of doing.
In Garrison Keillor's fictional Lake Wobegon 'all the children are above average.' Unfortunately, that is not the case in the real world, and never can be. In essence, NCLB assumed otherwise--an this denial of reality led to prescriptive measures that have had very unfortunate consequences. WD Curry noted some for rural Florida; in urban Georgia (and elsewhere) teachers have been driven to cheating to meet unrealistic goals, so that their schools would not be stigmatized and penalized.
Another consequence is that special education is put under severe pressure: its bedrock has been the "IEP"--a personalized instructional plan tailored to the student's specific needs. But that can't really work when those students are (as is increasingly the case under NCLB) forced to 'work to grade level.'
NCLB needs to change; though noble in intention, it has been a disaster, and will only get worse as its prescriptions diverge further from reality. The current initiatives may not be the answer, but at least they start a process that has a chance to lead to something less unrealistic.
I was for NCLB when it was proposed but now I see I was wrong about how it would work in the real world. If it is dismantled though, it seems all 50 states should get the waiver, to be equal.
We have serious problems with our public schools. I hoped NCLB would help, and it did, but it has created other problems at the same time. I think this is a classic case of the unintended consequences of good intentions.
NCLB was done with good intentions, but it was overly optimistic. There were pieces of it that could have been made useful, but overall, the policy was doomed to fail. NCLB set out to achieve the ideal instead of the realistic. The broad standards that NCLB uses to grade the school districts cannot work. There are individual factors in education that need to be looked at to have an accurate representation. It is probably best to get away from NCLB because punishing school districts will not help get the education system back to where it needs to be.
Absolutely, unequivocally, yes. Children do not come to the 'table' with the same experiences including exposure to a world in which they are immersed in learning and knowing and seeking.
I definitely believe that ALL CHILDREN can learn. All children do not learn at the same rate...and for that reason to put an arbitrary time on when children should know things was ludicrous. These 'ideas' are created by those who have NO CLUE.
That does NOT mean that accountability will cease. It just means using absurd instruments and over assessment hopefully can be reigned in.
As I came through school, there were children who did not read on grade level or perform well in other academic areas. The finger was not pointed solely at the SCHOOLS as being the reason for that 'failure' to acquire skills. Parents were more involved and were expected to step up to the plate.
I laud all who home school I laud all who have children in other school settings as well. However, it does take a village to educate children...the schools cannot and should not be expected to be the sole voice about education for children.If a cooperative effort on the part of parents/caregivers, community, and school exists, children will improve and these grim statistics will begin to drop.
I have written several hubs on the topic of the power of the parent...the parents' voice and active role is NEEDED.
so i got off the topic a bit...but i felt a need to clarify....
The NCLB act put way too much emphasis on testing scores in four subjects Math, Reading, Science and History and way too little emphasis on the actual understanding of these subjects.
If you have the time and want a parent's perspective about this subject, please check out my Hub. http://noturningback.hubpages.com/hub/I … tisfaction
Teachers know how to teach, w/o government micromanagement
I truly hope that these testing practices, that destroy a learning disabled child's already fragile self-esteem will soon cease!
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