What's the progress with 'leave no child behind?'
ASK THIS | May 05, 2004
Q. How worthwhile are standardized tests?
Q. What do teachers have to say? Parents? Students? Principals? Legislators? Candidates for office?
Q. On this issue, where do the politics end and the facts begin?
The effect on local schools of the “No Child Left Behind” act is a vital, running story with many stakeholders, and it calls for regular revisits. Is "No Child Left Behind" a great idea or a sham? Something that needs a little fixing, or a disaster? In a March 1, 2004, letter to the New York Times, a schoolteacher in Texas — where “No Child Left Behind” was invented — wrote that elevating "standardized tests to near divine status is destroying public education" in the state. The teacher, John Fullinwider of Dallas, wrote that the law is fine "except for children who don't measure up, children in overcrowded classrooms, children speaking languages other than English, children growing up in grinding poverty and children who, for whatever reason, learn at other than the 'standard' pace. The law is contempt masked as compassion, irresponsibility masked as accountability."
Barry Sussman is the editor of the Nieman Watchdog Project. He is the author of The Great Cover-Up: Nixon and the Scandal of Watergate, now in its fourth edition.
most stories miss the point
- executive editor, blackmoney.com
06/25/2004, 07:25 PM
The Commission on Research in Black Education (http://www.coribe.org) has compiled a set of best practices for teaching so-called "at-risk" students that has very little to do with standardized testing. Two charter school, Culture and Language Academy of Success,and Watts Learning Center, in Los Angeles show how teaching strategies, content and technology make the difference. I visited CLAS two weeks ago and watched a school where every child down to kindergarten was operating their own personal laptop.