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Friday, October 3, 2008

AYP thwarts Accountability

The Spartanburg Herald Journal has a good article on AYP (Annual Yearly Progress) and NCLB (No Child Left Behind). You can find the entire article here.

From the article:

"It isn't because the schools are getting worse or children aren't learning as much. The students are learning more, and the schools are improving. The higher test scores on the Palmetto Achievement Challenge Tests (PACT) show that improvement.

But the improvement is deemed inadequate by a failed federal system that twists state processes and obscures any meaningful standard of progress."

I agree with this. However, the article goes on to say:

"Education is a state matter. The federal government has no constitutional role to play in running state schools."

Which I wish I could agree with. A problem with NCLB is that it didn't set up national standards and it didn't fully fund improvements needed to meet NCLB targets (which are ultimately unachievable - do we really believe every child can meet proficient standards?). I believe our country needs national standards. The fact some states "sand bagged" their standards, and our country's history of treating citizens unequally, proves there needs to be a national conscience. It is important that our citizens reach a proficiency to secure our freedoms and democracy.

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