Wednesday, July 28, 2004

NCLB is a good thing 

You should take the time to read this article by Joanne Jacobs on the No Child Left Behind legislation.

NCLB is a good thing. The educational organizations that are opposing NCLB have issues that do not focus on the child's learning. Teachers unions are opposed to NCLB because poor instruction will be exposed. If children in a class do not show improvement, then the teacher or the methods or the curriculum must change. Teachers are not happy being labeled as "underperforming" nor do they want to have someone outside the classroom telling them what and how to teach.

Other organizations are opposed to NCLB because it comes from the Bush administration.

Why is NCLB a good thing? Because the program does not mandate that a certain test be used. NCLB allows the state and school system to choose the most appropriate test for the children and curriculum. Then, the data gained from the test can be used to compare the children's performance with peers at other schools. There are numerous examples of schools and entire systems realizing that they are underperforming or failing. The schools had a reputation of being a positive learning experience. But when compared with peer schools, they realized they had not been challenging the students. Don't believe me?

How many times have you heard or read of a student completing high school but not beling able to pass an exit exam? Most exit exams are based on 10th grade knowledge, yet many students are unable to acheive a passing grade after completing the 12th grade. Last year, a valedictorian at a New Orleans high school could not score high enough on the ACT or SAT to enter college. She was the school's valedictorian!

Without NCLB, schools would have continued to ignore the situation. Many students, especially poor and minority students, would have continued to receive a poor education. With NCLB, schools have to make changes to address these issues.

NCLB is a good thing.

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