Public schools in the United States need to try to spark creative thinking in children and move away from curriculums that just teach to standardized tests, U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan told nearly 200 people gathered Monday at the Emerging Issues Forum at the Raleigh Convention Center, The News Observer reports.

“We want to give every child a chance to discover their genius, what they’re best at,” Duncan said.

Otherwise, Duncan said, the nation won’t be able to keep up with technology advances being made in other countries. He also took aim at the emphasis on standardized testing as part of President George W. Bush’s “No Child Left Behind” program. Duncan, who ran Chicago’s public school system until President Barack Obama selected him for the Cabinet seat, gave the keynote address by a video hookup Monday for the two-day forum in Raleigh. Duncan said he wants to see schools go beyond the reading and math taught in traditional curriculums and incorporate more technology, arts, sciences and humanities.

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