In The News

News Archives – August 2007

August 21, 2007 – The Dallas News - “No strange bedfellow left behind here.”
Business groups and civil rights organizations are teaming up to support keeping No Child Left Behind strong. The No Child Left Behind Works coalition that formed last month includes the National Council of La Raza, arguably the nation's leading Hispanic organization; The Links Inc., an African-American women's group; and the Commission on Civil Rights, whose board members include heavy-duty Democrats like Bill Bradley and Eleanor Holmes Norton. They're partners with such groups as the Business Roundtable in an alliance you rarely see. They believe in No Child's goal of getting all children reading and doing math at grade level by 2014, and they know we can't get there without accountability for students’ progress.

August 16, 2007- The News-Record - "Students Exceed Statewide Test Averages".
While school officials were thrilled to see individual scores and school averages surpass last year’s results, the real excitement for some was getting off the list of schools that didn’t meet adequate yearly progress under the federal No Child Left Behind Act. “I thought we were going to do well ... but this exceeded all my expectations,” said Twin Spruce Junior High Principal Dave Foreman. “It’s up there with one of the top things in my career in education.”

August 16, 2007- Vindicator - "3 Improved Valley districts vow to keep it up ".
Superintendent Frank Lazzeri,of Youngstown, Ohio, said,  "If it were not for adequate yearly progress [measurements] and No Child Left Behind, I don't know if schools in general would be as focused as they are on helping all children," the superintendent said. "I believe that all children deserve a high quality education."

August 16, 2007- Education Week- "NCLB: ActII: U.S. Chamber Weighs In"
This week, one of the leading voices in the U.S. business lobby, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, offered some specifics on the kinds of changes to the law its leaders will support, with this underlying message: Hold firm.

The U.S. Chamber could not take specific positions on alternative accountability measures, he added, because federal lawmakers had not put such proposals in writing yet. Even so, Rothkopf said he has heard rumblings about student attendance, as well as some measure of student problem-solving ability, counting as gauges of student progress.

Both ideas are ill-conceived, he said.

Jacque Johnson, an executive director of education and workforce issues for the Chamber, said it would hold off weighing in on using graduation rates as a measure until it sees more specifics.

August 15, 2007 - Education Week - "10-State Pilot Preparing Teachers to Develop Tests".
Experts say a new wave of federally financed assessments being piloted this fall in 10 states is a sign of the growing recognition that standardized end-of-grade tests are not the end-all, be-all for measuring student learning.  “No Child Left Behind helped us identify challenges and problems,” Mr. Weinbaum said, referring to the 5½-year-old federal law, which uses state-test results as the primary gauge of academic progress. The next step, he added, is to start asking, “Now, what are we supposed to do about them?”

August 12, 2007-Washington Post- "Stipends, Training for Teachers Fuel Debate; Some Say 'No Child' Funds Should Be Used In Nation's Poor Schools."
Prince George's County schools are offering new teachers stipends to pay for professional development, Montgomery County is hiring instructional coaches, Fairfax and Arlington county schools will have some smaller classes and Loudoun County teachers will have the chance to take free college courses -- all thanks to the federal No Child Left Behind Act.

Since 2002, Congress has provided about $16 billion under the law to help states and school systems improve the caliber of the teaching workforce, the biggest federal investment ever in teacher quality. About $30 million of these grants flowed to the Washington area last year, a Washington Post survey found.

August 6, 2007, Hoover Institution-"What Americans Think about Their Schools."
U.S. adults conducted by the Hoover Institution’s Education Next and the Program on Education Policy and Governance (PEPG) at Harvard University, the public backs reauthorization of the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB). The public also strongly supports reforms designed to hold individual students accountable for their performance on state tests

August 3, 2007, Business Wire- "Education Next: New National Survey Shows Majority of Americans Support Reauthorization of No Child Left Behind."
A new national survey by the Hoover Institution’s Education Next and the Program on Education Policy and Governance (PEPG) at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government finds that a majority of the public backs the reauthorization of the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) and the accountability it has brought to public education.  When asked for their view on the matter, 57 percent of adults suggested that Congress renew the act either as is or with minor changes, according to the poll findings. “The level of support for federal accountability legislation is even higher, if the specific words -- No Child Left Behind -- are not mentioned in the survey,” reports William G. Howell, PEPG deputy director and a professor at the University of Chicago, who codirected the survey together with Paul E. Peterson of Harvard University and Martin R. West of Brown University. When NCLB is described as “federal legislation” rather than mentioned by name, as was the case for a randomly selected half the survey respondents, support for extending its accountability provisions rises to 71 percent.