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Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Missouri goes for approval of denial (?) of "No Child Left Behind"

That's some good news. Of course, I don't understand how that's working, that the Federal Government has approved 10 of the 50 states to get waivers from the "No Child Left Behind" law but it's an improvement, nonetheless, and Missouri and everyone else should go for it, too. The NCLB law was and is so monumentally stupid, it's difficult to say how much so. Seriously, since when was any human being, let alone a group, let alone a group of children, supposed to get to "100% proficiency" in all areas of education? How was that going to happen? Suddenly we were to be blesssed with perfect children? An entire generation, nationwide, coast-to-coast that were going to do 100% on all subjects? What planet did these people live on? That provision alone doomed the entire law and effort. You're going to cut back on financial support for schools because they can't and don't reach 100% proficiency with all their students by 2014? Right. Great idea. Why don't you just set the bar even higher (not that that's possible) and then set the trigger date for completion as, oh, I don't know, TOMORROW? On top of that, the whole thing was UNFUNDED. How do you set higher standards for schools and states for their kids but not give any additional funding for things like better teacher-to-student ratios? I'm not saying or suggesting money gets you higher grades every time, either. It doesn't. But if you set impossibly high standards and then don't fund improvements (again, like the teacher-to-student ratio), don't expect better results. And that's just a little bit of what's wrong with the NCLB Act. The bad thing is that it came from Democrats and Teddy Kennedy. (Honestly, how he thought this was a good idea is beyond me). The completely unsurprising thing is that it also came from the George W. Bush administration, as so many insane things did--like his chosen, illegal Iraq invasion and war, for one, and tax cuts only for the wealthy being another. Au revoire, NCLB. We surely won't miss you. Links: http://www.kansascity.com/2012/02/21/3442579/missouri-board-approves-no-child.html; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/No_Child_Left_Behind_Act

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