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  1. 17 Mar '11 02:42 / 3 edits
    http://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/are-82-percent-schools-failing#

    President Barak Obama declared this week that four of five public schools could be labelled as "failing" this year under the No Child Left Behind Act if Congress does not take action to rewrite the law.

    "That is an astonishing number," he said Monday at a Virginia middle school. "We know that four out of five schools in this country are not failing."

    Obama's terminology was not quite right, though. There is no "failing" label in the No Child Left Behind Act. And schools that do not meet growth targets -- aimed at getting 100 % of students proficient in math, reading and science by 2014 -- for one year are not subject to any intervention.

    Those unable to do so for two or more consecutive years are considered "in need of improvement." The consequences then become stiffer each year, starting with offering students an oppurtunity to attend another school, and escalating if the targets remain unmet.

    For those schools, there is at least the implication of failure, and that is one reason Obama says the 2001 law needs to be changed. There are many ways for a school to fall short of its requirements, even if most of its students are improving and succeeding. A school where all but one group of students are considered proficient in reading, science, and math would be lumped into the same category as schools where no students are proficient in those subjects.

    The Department of Education says the number of schools that fail to meet the annual proficiency goals could jump from 37% to 82% this year. That would include schools who have not met the requirements for just one year.

    "Everyone knows this day was coming," Education Department spokesperson Justin Hamilton said. "Now that it is upon us, we need to have an open, honest debate about the consequences of a law that could label four out of five schools as failing."

    Education experts interviewed by The Associated Press said it was reasonable to expect some increase as the 2014 proficiancy deadline nears, but that it is misleading for the administration to say the law would label all these schools as "failing". They also question the magnitude of the projected jump, saying it seems too large.

    "That is a huge difference," said Tom Loveless, a senior fellow at the Brookings institution. "Over the history of NCLB, that percentage has not moved so much. So why would it suddenly more than double?"

    Officials say part of the increase is driven by states that waited to raise their student proficiency levels until the final years before 2014. Loveless said there is merit to that claim, but he questioned why the Department of Education does not back up its assertion by releasing a spreadsheet showing, state by state, how often and to what degree that has occured.

    "Even then, they are making assumptions about how the kids are going to score this year and they have not taken the test," he said.

    Patrick McGuinn, an education professor at Drew University, said it is reasonable to project an increase in schools not making adequate yearly progress, but tht it would be difficult to project by how much.

    He noted that schools have a safe harbor provision that allows them to be held out of the "needs improvement" category if they are showing progress, and they also could ask for waivers. Hamilton said that provision was taken into consideration in the department's calculation.

    Granting the waivers, however, would take pressure off Congress to do a full reauthorization this year. McGuinn suspects there are political purposes behind the administration's dire tone.

    "They are really trying to highlight this and use it as a prod for Congress to get moving," McGuinn said.

    Former Education Secretary Margaret Spellings, who served under President George W Bush when the federal law was implemented, said she estimated half of schools would fail to meet federal standards this year, and she suggested all the conjecturing was demoralizing to educators.

    "It's obviously a political tactic," she said.

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    So is the No Child Left Behind legislation to harsh due to unrealistic goals that should be met? If so, should additional goals be created that are not as lofty or should schools never be held accountable to goals that might label them a "failure"?

    And lastly, is it just me or does it make you want to spew as education is held hostage by politicians? I mean, it matters little which side you may take, whatever position you can clearly see that the lives of children are nothing more than pawns in a sick political game of chess.
  2. Subscriber FMF
    a.k.a. John W Booth
    17 Mar '11 03:07
    Originally posted by whodey
    And lastly, is it just me or does it make you want to spew as education is held hostage by politicians? I mean, it matters little which side you may take, whatever position you can clearly see that the lives of children are nothing more than pawns in a sick political game of chess.
    Surely if you truly believe that "it matters little which side you may take" and the only 'analysis' you have to offer is that "education is held hostage by politicians" then, while parents, educators and politicians are actually taking positions and seeking affordable solutions, you are in fact simply revelling in the "sick political game of chess" yourself by making unsubstantiated accusations that "lives of children are nothing more than pawns" to politicians?
  3. 17 Mar '11 12:53
    Originally posted by FMF
    Surely if you truly believe that "it matters little which side you may take" and the only 'analysis' you have to offer is that "education is held hostage by politicians" then, while parents, educators and politicians are actually taking positions and seeking affordable solutions, you are in fact simply revelling in the "sick political game of chess" yourself by ...[text shortened]... iated accusations that "lives of children are nothing more than pawns" to politicians?
    There is no way around it. If you take the side of those on the left then "W" set unrealistic goals for public schools merely to be able to label them as failures which would then become an embarassment to government run education and proponents of the Department of Education. If you take the side of the right then you will say that Obama wants to water down the expectations regarding public education and not hold them accountable like they should be held accountable.

    Is there a middle ground?
  4. Subscriber FMF
    a.k.a. John W Booth
    17 Mar '11 13:01
    Originally posted by whodey
    Is there a middle ground?
    If you could suggest a "a middle ground" and then defend your ideas we might have the makings of a thread. But so far we just have "whodey doesn't care about what position anyone takes on educaction: whodey is so angry that he spews" - Discuss"
  5. 17 Mar '11 13:26
    Originally posted by whodey
    http://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/are-82-percent-schools-failing#

    President Barak Obama declared this week that four of five public schools could be labelled as "failing" this year under the No Child Left Behind Act if Congress does not take action to rewrite the law.

    "That is an astonishing number," he said Monday at a Virginia middle school. "We kn ...[text shortened]... are nothing more than pawns in a sick political game of chess.
    12.6 million whodey, you know its true.
  6. Subscriber no1marauder
    It's Nice to Be Nice
    17 Mar '11 14:29
    Originally posted by whodey
    http://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/are-82-percent-schools-failing#

    President Barak Obama declared this week that four of five public schools could be labelled as "failing" this year under the No Child Left Behind Act if Congress does not take action to rewrite the law.

    "That is an astonishing number," he said Monday at a Virginia middle school. "We kn ...[text shortened]... are nothing more than pawns in a sick political game of chess.
    No Child Left Behind was a stupid law from the get go and should be repealed. The Republicans wanted to screw the teacher unions and undermine public education; the Democrats thought it was a neat way to get more funding to the schools. The meat axe approach of thinking you can realistically measure learning by forced taking of standardized tests is an abomination.

    Let the states and localities run their schools as they please (subject to Equal Protection requirements).
  7. Standard member bill718
    Enigma
    17 Mar '11 15:34 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by whodey
    http://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/are-82-percent-schools-failing#

    President Barak Obama declared this week that four of five public schools could be labelled as "failing" this year under the No Child Left Behind Act if Congress does not take action to rewrite the law.

    "That is an astonishing number," he said Monday at a Virginia middle school. "We kn are nothing more than pawns in a sick political game of chess.
    In reading this post of yours, 2 things have become very clear to me (and I suspect others as well)

    1. You are very good at nit picking and finding fault with the ideas and programs of others.

    2. You have almost no ideas of your own on how to improve things.

    It's easy (and I suspect fun), to sit at a distance at your keyboard and find fault with others. So....what are your solutions whodey?? What clever little ideas do you have to contribute that will improve things??

    You may disagree here, but I have 3:

    1. Start kids in school 1-2 years earlier, with 10-11 month school years. This will give kids an average of 3-4 more years of classroom instruction by the time they graduate from High School. 3-4 years is a lot of classroom instruction, it's bound to make a difference.

    2. Cut out the extra activities. School should be just that. Glee club, DECA, cheerleaders etc can be done outside of school. This will no doubt save money, which can be placed where it belongs...classroom instruction

    3. Wake up the sluggards. There are many here in America that think American education is just dandy, and nothing needs to be done. I think these people need a reality check.

    Getting the idea Whodey? Rather than Obama bashing, which you no doubt enjoy What's your solution??
  8. 17 Mar '11 16:11
    Originally posted by FMF
    If you could suggest a "a middle ground" and then defend your ideas we might have the makings of a thread. But so far we just have "whodey doesn't care about what position anyone takes on educaction: whodey is so angry that he spews" - Discuss"
    No one is stopping you from creating a "middle ground". In fact, I would like to hear one from you.
  9. Subscriber FMF
    a.k.a. John W Booth
    17 Mar '11 16:14
    Originally posted by whodey
    No one is stopping you from creating a "middle ground". In fact, I would like to hear one from you.
    So you've started yet another thread with a vanity post OP.

    Topic: "whodey's frustration".

    Suggestions/Proposals/Original Ideas: none.
  10. 17 Mar '11 16:15 / 2 edits
    Originally posted by no1marauder
    No Child Left Behind was a stupid law from the get go and should be repealed. The Republicans wanted to screw the teacher unions and undermine public education; the Democrats thought it was a neat way to get more funding to the schools. The meat axe approach of thinking you can realistically measure learning by forced taking of standardized tests is an a ...[text shortened]... ates and localities run their schools as they please (subject to Equal Protection requirements).
    Now that's more like it. We have the evil Republicans trying to attack their political rivals in the teacher unions, because the teachers unions throw all their support behind their adversaries the democrats.

    Likewise, we have the democrat party throwing all their support behind the teachers unions for support. So in between we have the children's welfare who are of no benefit to either party. Is it then surprising that America ranks 48th internatioally in science and math?
  11. 17 Mar '11 16:18 / 2 edits
    Originally posted by bill718
    In reading this post of yours, 2 things have become very clear to me (and I suspect others as well)

    1. You are very good at nit picking and finding fault with the ideas and programs of others.

    2. You have almost no ideas of your own on how to improve things.

    It's easy (and I suspect fun), to sit at a distance at your keyboard and find fault with oth the idea Whodey? Rather than Obama bashing, which you no doubt enjoy What's your solution??
    Proposals? How about distancing politics from education?

    How?

    How about leaving it to individual communities as to how to educate their children rather than distant federal politicians who, in the end, care nothing about them?

    Why must all schools take the same approach about everyting? Why not let individual communities try various approaches? In the end what you will wind up with is a wealth of small labortories around the US that can teach us what the best approach is. Does Whodey have all the answers? Nope, and neither do any of you. One thing I do know, however, and that is none of us are as smart as all of us.
  12. Subscriber FMF
    a.k.a. John W Booth
    17 Mar '11 16:25 / 2 edits
    Originally posted by whodey
    How about distancing politics from education?
    Well, for example, stopping militant creationists from distorting education for nakedly political reasons and, for example again, stopping the Eladars of this world from separating blacks and whites and educating them separately for nakedly political reasons, are battles that need to be fought out in a political arena. And if public money is being invested then the democratic/political arena is - as imperfect as it may be - the best we have for sorting out priorities and policies.
  13. 17 Mar '11 16:27
    Originally posted by no1marauder
    No Child Left Behind was a stupid law from the get go and should be repealed. The Republicans wanted to screw the teacher unions and undermine public education; the Democrats thought it was a neat way to get more funding to the schools. The meat axe approach of thinking you can realistically measure learning by forced taking of standardized tests is an a ...[text shortened]... ates and localities run their schools as they please (subject to Equal Protection requirements).
    Ding, ding, ding. We have a winner!

    According to the Constitution, education is a matter for the States. We need to cut the Federal budget and doing away with the Education department would be a great start.
  14. 17 Mar '11 16:30
    Originally posted by FMF
    Well, for example, stopping militant creationists from distorting education for nakedly political reasons and, for example again, stopping the Eladars of this world from separating blacks and whites and educating them separately for nakedly political reasons, are battles that need to be fought out in a political arena. And if public money is being invested then ...[text shortened]... arena is - as imperfect as it may be - the best we have for sorting out priorities and policies.
    Where did I ever say I wanted to separate people based on color? I said separate based on testing results.

    You need to either find the quote that supports your statement or edit your post with an apology.
  15. Standard member bill718
    Enigma
    17 Mar '11 16:31
    Originally posted by Eladar
    Ding, ding, ding. We have a winner!

    According to the Constitution, education is a matter for the States. We need to cut the Federal budget and doing away with the Education department would be a great start.
    Not a bad idea. (I like the ding ding ding part too!)