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Livewire
September 23rd, 2011, 08:33 PM
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/44640812/ns/politics-white_house/#.Tn1b79RQgZI

http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/politics/2011/09/obama-no-child-left-behind-changes-will-allow-states-to-meet-higher-standards/



"Congress hasn't been able to do it. So I will," Obama said. "Our kids only get one shot at a decent education."

Under the plan Obama outlined, states can ask the Education Department to be exempted from some of the law's requirements if they meet certain conditions, such as imposing standards to prepare students for college and careers and setting evaluation standards for teachers and principals.


Despite allowing states to do away with the approaching 2014 deadline, Obama insisted he was not weakening the law, but rather helping states set higher standards. He said that the current law was forcing educators to teach to the test, give short shrift to subjects such as history and science, and lower standards as a way of avoiding penalties and stigmas.


The law is a signature legacy of President George W. Bush's administration and was approved with strong bipartisan support nearly a decade ago. But its popularity tanked as the years went on, as disputes over money divided Congress, schools said they were being labeled "failures," and questions soared over the testing and teacher-quality provisions.


"The goals behind No Child Left Behind were admirable, and President Bush deserves credit for that," Obama said during a statement from the White House.


"Higher standards are the right goal. Accountability is the right goal. Closing the achievement gap is the right goal. And we've got to stay focused on those goals," Obama said. "But experience has taught us that in its implementation, No Child Left Behind had some serious flaws that are hurting our children instead of helping them."

You wanted leadership and a backbone, there you go. Finally, we can get around to reforming NCLB and getting our schools back up to pace with the rest of the world.

Mr. X
September 23rd, 2011, 09:10 PM
I find one thing funny with NCLB. One that just screams huge flaw.

Schools are under funded. Have been ever since the whole economical mess started.

Less funds, lower test scores (usually)

A school gets marked as a failure, guess what? They lose... you guessed it, funding.

And that is called shooting a dying horse... twice.

FreakyLocz14
September 24th, 2011, 12:31 PM
NCLB is one of the things that Dubya did that I did not agree with. I opposed it from the start, and still oppose it today.

I'm not even going to get into a technical debate about it because just the simple idea of giving less funding to the schools that need it most, while allocating the most funding to schools that are already doing well is pure stupidity.

Higher standards are an admirable goal, but without funding, how can schools even attempt to meet those standards?

Lalapizzame
September 24th, 2011, 12:36 PM
Make teaching an attractive career by offering carrots and take away the financial punishment for academic deficiencies in a school. There is too much temptation to engage in administrative corruption doing so and schools are not able to improve if the gold needed is missing.

Not to mention having to devote many school days to exams is an exhaustive and costly process. Depriving students of an ability to learn more in order for them to have bureaucratic procedure is shameful and unenjoyable to tutor and pupil.

FreakyLocz14
September 24th, 2011, 12:59 PM
Make teaching an attractive career by offering carrots and take away the financial punishment for academic deficiencies in a school. There is too much temptation to engage in administrative corruption doing so and schools are not able to improve if the gold needed is missing.

Not to mention having to devote many school days to exams is an exhaustive and costly process. Depriving students of an ability to learn more in order for them to have bureaucratic procedure is shameful and unenjoyable to tutor and pupil.

When I was a senior in high school, we actually were allowed to skip two weeks of class because that time was being used to prep the 9th-11th graders for STAR exams, which 12th graders are exempt from.

While most of us liked the idea of an extra school vacation, I had a Calculus exam as soon as I got back.

Livewire
September 24th, 2011, 01:03 PM
When I was a senior in high school, we actually were allowed to skip two weeks of class because that time was being used to prep the 9th-11th graders for STAR exams, which 12th graders are exempt from.

While most of use liked the idea of an extra school vacation, but I had a Calculus exam as soon as I got back.

We have something similar here, while freshman and sophmore's are busy with the state graduation tests (mandated in part by NCLB) the juniors and seniors basically had free reign to come and go as they please for an entire week of the school year. One of many problems with those tests.

FreakyLocz14
September 24th, 2011, 04:00 PM
We have something similar here, while freshman and sophmore's are busy with the state graduation tests (mandated in part by NCLB) the juniors and seniors basically had free reign to come and go as they please for an entire week of the school year. One of many problems with those tests.

11th graders, too? Well, our STAR exams mix both federal NCLB standards with state standards. We also have a separate CAHSEE (California High School Exit Exam) for 10th graders that was passed by the Legislature shortly after NCLB passed.

TRIFORCE89
September 24th, 2011, 04:27 PM
"Congress hasn't been able to do it. So I will," Obama said.

Finally. It only took him forever. He should have said this about everything since he came into office.

Lalapizzame
September 25th, 2011, 09:17 AM
He will get heckled and laughed off-stage if he claims he can do anything now.

Netto Azure
September 25th, 2011, 02:44 PM
NCLB is one of the things that Dubya did that I did not agree with. I opposed it from the start, and still oppose it today.

I'm not even going to get into a technical debate about it because just the simple idea of giving less funding to the schools that need it most, while allocating the most funding to schools that are already doing well is pure stupidity.

Higher standards are an admirable goal, but without funding, how can schools even attempt to meet those standards?

Wow...I agree with you.

He will get heckled and laughed off-stage if he claims he can do anything now.

There's still some Race to the Top grants left from the Recovery Act. But most of what he can do now is pressure Congress and Executive Orders.

Kura
September 25th, 2011, 03:34 PM
YAAAAAAAAAAAAYYY! Let's celebrate the rise of a (hopefully) smarter generation!!!!

Otter Mii-kun
September 25th, 2011, 06:56 PM
As usual, the federal government is responding to our (lack of) education crisis with even more regulations and federal control. Our education system has been going downhill ever since the federal government started getting its nose into it.
No amount of regulations or spending can "fix" our education system in the condition it is now.
All this is, of course, being pushed in the name of "being globally competitive" which is a coverup for the elite's efforts to erase our national borders and sovereignty (as seen by the lack of enforcement of our immigration laws).

Here's an editorial from Dale McFeatters of Scripps Howard News Service about this proposal:
( http://www.scrippsnews.com/content/editorial-another-try-leaving-no-child-behind )
Editorial: Another try at leaving no child behind
Submitted by SHNS on Fri, 09/23/2011 - 16:05
An editorial / By Dale McFeatters, Scripps Howard News Service

For a small-government conservative, President George W. Bush inexorably left behind more and bigger government.

Now President Barack Obama is subtly expanding the reach of the federal government in one of Bush's signature initiatives, the 2002 No Child Left Behind Act. Although public education is traditionally a local and state responsibility, NCLB put the federal government, agree with the policy or not, squarely athwart local education.

Schools faced a variety of penalties, including closure, if their students failed to meet certain standards in English and math based on standardized tests devised by the states. NCLB made little allowance for schools that drew enrollments from low-income areas with high percentages of dysfunctional families.

As with the Garrison Keillor's fabled Lake Wobegon, the goal was to have every student be above average, and, in what would seem an overly ambitious goal, require every student to be proficient in reading and math by 2014.

The law was initially popular for introducing local accountability into the equation, but some educators became disillusioned by the rigidity of the requirements, the severity of the punitive measures for falling short and what they saw as an unwritten mandate to "teach to the test," favoring intense instruction in math and reading to the exclusion of subjects like science, history and geography, not to mention art and music. (Currently, the focus is to increase emphasis on math and science (so that we can taught that evolution is "proven"), while downplaying equally important subjects, such as history, economics, and civics. ~Otter)

There were stories of schools gaming the requirements by the use of dumbed-down tests, making sure poor performers were absent on test day and refusing to accept transfers from failing schools.

NCLB was supposed to have been reauthorized four years ago, but Congress couldn't agree on the necessary reforms and the law has operated on a series of year-by-year extensions since.

Obama this past week proposed a series of changes that he will impose by executive order, saying in his newly combative mode, "Congress has been unable to do it. So I will," adding the sanctimonious half-truism, "Our kids only get one shot at a decent education." (I don't care what you think, but this sounds like a dictatorship to me! ~Otter)

Obama would allow the states to apply for exemptions from the law, if they meet certain requirements, such as linking teacher and principal evaluations to the test results and setting standards that will lead students to college and careers.

The final arbiter of these waivers -- the U.S. Department of Education, i.e., the federal government. You may argue whether uniform national standards, as they have in Western Europe, China and Japan, are good or bad policy, but when a president can order national changes by executive fiat, we are fast reaching the point of no return.

(Distributed by Scripps Howard News Service, http://www.scrippsnews.com)

FreakyLocz14
September 25th, 2011, 07:19 PM
As usual, the federal government is responding to our (lack of) education crisis with even more regulations and federal control. Our education system has been going downhill ever since the federal government started getting its nose into it.
No amount of regulations or spending can "fix" our education system in the condition it is now.
All this is, of course, being pushed in the name of "being globally competitive" which is a coverup for the elite's efforts to erase our national borders and sovereignty (as seen by the lack of enforcement of our immigration laws).

Here's an editorial from Dale McFeatters of Scripps Howard News Service about this proposal:
( http://www.scrippsnews.com/content/editorial-another-try-leaving-no-child-behind )


President Bush was no conservative in the traditional, libertarian sense. He was a neoconservative.

Livewire
September 25th, 2011, 07:27 PM
As usual, the federal government is responding to our (lack of) education crisis with even more regulations and federal control. Our education system has been going downhill ever since the federal government started getting its nose into it.
No amount of regulations or spending can "fix" our education system in the condition it is now.
All this is, of course, being pushed in the name of "being globally competitive" which is a coverup for the elite's efforts to erase our national borders and sovereignty (as seen by the lack of enforcement of our immigration laws).

Here's an editorial from Dale McFeatters of Scripps Howard News Service about this proposal:
( http://www.scrippsnews.com/content/editorial-another-try-leaving-no-child-behind )


Regardless, leaving education on it's own certainly won't help either. What method of reform we use is beside the point. What matters is that we fix the problem. We also just scored the lowest ever SAT score average in American History. You cannot deny the multitude of problems here.

Melody
September 25th, 2011, 10:29 PM
Well I'm glad he's doing SOMETHING. Obama is right, NCLB was a well intended law but it really did lead to teachers being forced to teach the test and not the content.

Literally. I grew up with NCLB. Bush enacted it in Texas first, when he was the governor to the same bipartisan support, and while it was indeed well intended, it screwed things up. It added to an extra hour of wasted time every day while the teacher lectured us about how the test, TAAS at the time and TAKS, later was tricky. They'd teach us about the word problems and how they used sometimes vague language to fool you. I of course, took more attention to that than anything else and passed well enough. Though now that I am in college I suffer for that. It's really tough, because that translates into having to take extra courses and junk like that. :<

Otter Mii-kun
September 30th, 2011, 03:01 PM
Although this is a bit off-topic, the following appears to be a part of Obama's education reform proposal: Over the last few days, I've been seeing an ad (mostly during "Wheel of Fortune") from the National Education Association (NEA) with children complaining about cuts to education and urging lawmakers to pass Obama's jobs bill (read: yet another inflationary stimulus).

From http://thehill.com/video/in-the-news/184381-teachers-union-launches-ad-campaign-supporting-obama-jobs-bill :
jDR3vCcGUbE
Teachers union launches ad campaign supporting Obama jobs bill
By Kevin Bogardus - 09/28/11 12:49 PM ET

The National Education Association (NEA) launched a multistate television ad campaign Wednesday in support of President Obama's American Jobs Act.

The 30-second television ad urges lawmakers to vote for the legislation, with several children saying school programs are being cut and teachers are being laid off. The president's proposal includes $30 billion to pay for teachers and another $30 billion to modernize schools.

NEA is the nation's largest union, with 3.2 million members made up of teachers and other education staff.

"The American Jobs Act is a win-win for the American people," NEA President Dennis Van Roekel said in a statement. "Congress can choose to put students ahead of political gridlock by supporting a bill that puts Americans back to work, modernizes our schools, and puts educators in classrooms instead of on the unemployment lines."

The ad will air in Washington, D.C., and five states: Massachusetts, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Texas and Virginia. A spokesman for the union estimated the ad buy would cost roughly $350,000.

The NEA estimates that the bill could put 280,000 educators back to work and modernize 35,000 public schools.

This story was updated at 1:50 p.m.
More of Obama's last stimulus (nearly $1 TRILLION) went to education and health care than to roads, despite claims that the so-called "Recovery and Reinvestment Act" was needed or else "all our bridges will collapse".

Alley Cat
October 1st, 2011, 12:57 PM
I haven't really experienced the effects of No Child Left Behind. My teachers have ALWAYS taught content over teaching the test. The closest thing they'd do is go over star review questions. But that also helps you learn better, as we discuss the answers in class.

My school has been underfunded for years. We make due with what we can. Just last year we got a California Distinguished Schools award. That's pretty awesome, ahaha.

But yeah, this law sucks. The design of it was just inane. Take away the support from those who need it. At least Obama is finally trying to take action. Well, when I start to see change though, I'll believe it. Anyone can promise, few can deliver.

Livewire
October 5th, 2011, 10:10 PM
More of Obama's last stimulus (nearly $1 TRILLION) went to education and health care than to roads, despite claims that the so-called "Recovery and Reinvestment Act" was needed or else "all our bridges will collapse".

Our infrastructure is in dire shape, we're gonna need more than that. Remember the I-35 bridge in Minnesota in 2007? There will be more where that came from if we continue to neglect it.