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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

NCLB waivers? Big deal, parents group says



When Arne Duncan announced that the Obama administration would move on its own to relax No Child Left Behind as Congress dithers, many states cheered the idea of squirming out from under the federal thumb that holds their schools to different accountability levels than they do. (See this NCES report to get a picture of how state tests differ from one another and from the "Nation's report card.")

Several states already had applied, suggesting there's a disconnect between the inflexible federal rules and the more discerning (in some cases) state models that try to account for growth as well as proficiency.

But many are unimpressed with the latest move, suggesting it's just a trade of one set of bad rules for another. Here's what Parents Across America, co-founded by Florida's Rita Solnet with help from Diane Ravitch, had to say:

"The Department of Education could force more states to adopt the Common Core Curriculum thus continuing to ignore the fact that it is illegal for the federal government to impose a national curriculum. The proposal is also likely to expand the destructive agenda of over-testing, school closings, and privatization, despite the fact that these policies have no scientific evidence to support them and are causing tremendous distress in communities across the nation."

Your thoughts? And while you're at it, think about this: Why is it that parents and officials, whether state, school board or federal, often seem to be at odds on such matters?

[Last modified: Thursday, August 11, 2011 7:00am]


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