The Ship Is Sinking

Our federal government is preparing to jump the education ship and leave our children’s educational futures to individual states.

Both the Student Success Act and the Encouraging Innovation and Effective Teachers Act are before Congress for approval.

“The Student Success Act would overhaul several policies outlined in No Child Left Behind (NCLB): most importantly, it would end the Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) system. States would instead be asked to develop their own accountability metrics.

The Student Success Act, formally HR 3989, would repeal the federal requirement that states administer annual assessments in science, leaving the option to individual states. It would eliminate the School Improvement Grant program, which allows states and school districts to tap federal funding in exchange for committing to specific turnaround models to improve struggling schools, but increase to 10 percent the set-aside for Title I money that goes toward school improvement. The act would also merge the funding streams for migrant education, neglected and delinquent, English language acquisition and Indian education programs into the main Title I pool, meaning states and school districts could use the money for any Title I-related activities.

The Student Success Act would repeal the federal requirement that teachers be highly qualified; the remaining teacher-related provisions were outlined in the Encouraging Innovation and Effective Teachers Act (formally HR 3990).

That bill would loosen the conditions for federal funding that supports the development of teacher evaluation systems, in contrast to the specific policies outlined by the Obama administration in the Race To The Top program. It would consolidate most teacher quality grant programs into a single block grant. Ranking member George Miller (D-Calif.) argued that there would be no accountability for federal dollars under the Republican proposal. A new Local Academic Flexible Grant program would be established to fund innovative initiatives designed by states and school districts.

Instead of loosening federal regulations, leaders in education must fight for a Constitutional amendment that guarantees an excellent, child centered, free, and public education to all of its children.

Our children deserve the right to receive an excellent education.

Join the Movement to Save Our Children!

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