Florida, Teachers vs. Testing, Parents' Rights, and More (NCLB News)

Florida Follows Suit

What passes for big NCLB news this week is that FLA, long trapped for obvious political reasons into following NCLB closely, may now finally do what many other states are doing -- change things around so that its AYP calculations and results aren't so stringent:

Florida might loosen requirements AP
State eyes standards change Miami Herald
All the cool kids are doing it… Gadfly

Mop-up stories from Utah and California:

Utah Leading Resistance Against 'No Child Left Behind' KSL-TV

California, U.S. Department of Education Strike Deal on NCLB Rules

Utah GOP Caucus Writes Bush on Law EW

Huntsman voices Utah's concerns over No Child regulations

There's also some new guidance news: NCLB Guidance EW

For a wrapup of which state is doing what, go to, see: States weigh in on ed reform (ASCD). For some interesting thoughts on states' claims that NCLB is an unfunded mandate, check out: Those unfunded mandates (Washington Post via Eduwonk).

Teachers vs. Testing:

The war between teachers and testing -- an ongoing and troubling trend -- is described and discussed in a pair of timely articles from Teacher Magazine: Beyond Good and Evil (TM), Is the standards movement good for teachers? (TM).

Tutoring > Choice (Except Maybe in Chicago)

NCLB Choice Option Going Untapped, But Tutoring Picking Up EW (great chart)

GHSA passes eligibility rule to thwart NCLB Macon Telegraph

Private Tutoring Firm Ousted From 7 Chicago Schools

PEN Report -- and a Rebuttal from the Achievement Alliance

In terms of new reports and studies, this week’s biggest news is the release of a report from the Public Education Fund based on hearings from around the country that is notably open-minded on whether NCLB is working or ot. In Hearings, Poll, PEN Finds Support for Goals of NCLB (EW), Open to the Public (PEN). Ove all, the report seems to find that parents among others strongly support the goals of the law, but are unsure of what the law requires (including its parent involvement provisions) and feel left out of the school improvement process.

A same-day rebuttal from the Achievement Alliance states: “We strongly agree with PEN’s conclusion that federal and state governments must better enforce parents’ rights under NCLB. But ...the PEN report perpetuates the misconception that NCLB punishes students...No Child Left Behind represents the best chance this nation has of ensuring that all children learn to high standards..."

Other reports of interest:

Inside the Black Box of High-Performing, High-Poverty Schools Pritchard Committee for Academic Excellence via Gadfly
A Report on Middle and High School Improvement Programs PDF
Characteristics of High-Performing, High-Poverty Schools ResearchBrief
Failing Schools and the Role of Educational Service Agencies PDF

Best of the Rest:

Failures of system leave successful student behind Baltimore Sun

Social Studies Losing Out to Reading, Math EW

No Child Left Behind tests worry teachers Kansas City Star
Another round of required tests under NCLB worries ... San Diego Daily Transcript
Individual instruction key to improving test scores Ascension Citizen
NCLB just another `crisis' ruse Sun-Sentinel.com
No Child Left Behind: Kids who need help don't get it Star Tribune
NCLB: A Satire


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