Opinion: The problem with Obama’s plan to issue NCLB waivers

President Obama and Education Secretary Arne Duncan would do well to listen to Daniel Domenech on the subject of issuing states waivers from key provisions of No Child Left Behind, says Columnist Valerie Strauss for the Washington Post. Obama is expected to announce on Friday the details of his plan to issue the waivers, according to this story by my colleague, Lyndsey Layton…

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No Child Left Behind: Can Obama revamp the education law?

The Obama Administration is doubling down on its push to overhaul the federal No Child Left Behind Act, reports TIME. Last Wednesday, Secretary of Education Arne Duncan testified before Congress and aggressively urged action to revise the landmark and contentious education law that was passed in 2001. The President began this week with a speech at a northern Virginia middle school urging Congress to act and then spent part of Tuesday cutting several radio interviews prodding Capitol Hill even more. This isn’t the first time the Administration has implored Congress to change this law: it’s been a constant drumbeat since 2009 (the law was due to be “reauthorized,” Washingtonspeak for tuned up, in 2007 but Congress couldn’t agree on how to do it) and even during the 2008 campaign. Now, frustrated with the lack of action, Obama and Duncan are trying a new approach: scaring Congress into acting. Both Obama and Duncan are highlighting Department of Education estimates that more than 80% of schools will not meet performance targets this year if the law isn’t changed. One wag dubbed the new strategy a “fail wail.”

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Obama offers blueprint for rewriting NCLB

The blueprint goes before the House Education and Labor Committee on March 17.
The blueprint goes before the House Education and Labor Committee on March 17.

President Barack Obama on March 13 unveiled a plan to overhaul the 2002 No Child Left Behind education law championed by President George W. Bush. The plan aims to replace a system that in the last decade has tagged more than a third of schools as failing and created a hodgepodge of sometimes weak academic standards among states.

“Unless we take action—unless we step up—there are countless children who will never realize their full talent and potential,” Obama said during a video address. “I don’t accept that future for them. And I don’t accept that future for the United States of America.”

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