Sunday, February 22, 2015

Say NO to Reauthorization of No Child Left Behind

In the coming week, Congress is considering reauthorizing No Child Left Behind.  My Congressman, Virginia Foxx, supports NCLB. I've started a petition on my website to ask Virginia Foxx to vote no on reauthorization of No Child Left Behind (H.R. 5). You can sign it here. I'm planning on bringing copies of the petition to her office Tuesday, February 24 and will make sure her staff receives copies of any other signatures past this date.

Read the Heritage Action Sentinel Brief of ReAuthorizing NCLB here.

No Child Left Behind takes power away from parents and students and empowers bureaucrats and unions. The federal government has become too involved in education. Education should be controlled locally! H.R. 5 lacks an opt-out of federal programs and mandates for states. Since education should be controlled closer to home, states should able to opt out. Bureaucrats in DC do not know better than parents and localities.

H.R. 5 does increase portability, but only to public schools and public charter schools. Rep. Luke Messer (R-IN) had proposed an amendment in committee that was withdrawn. This amendment would have extended portability to private schools of choice, IF a state so chose!

H.R. 5 Does NOT protect against Common Core.  It prevents future coercion by the federal government in forcing states to adopt Common Core standards, but does not stop it.

H.R. 5 claims to replace the current national accountability system with state-led accountability systems. "They" claim  this frees states from federal interference. Heritage Action states, "Although the proposal wisely eliminates counterproductive and prescriptive Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) mandates, H.R. 5 maintains the current NCLB mandates for states to establish standards in reading and math and to test kids annually between grades 3-8 and once in high school."

H.R. 5 orders that academic achievement standards "include the same knowledge, skills and levels of achievement expected of all public school students in the state" and mandates that states must also use "the same academic measure the academic achievement of all public school students in the state." See the link to the Heritage Action brief above for more information.

H.R. 5 consolidates more than 65 programs into a Local Academic Flexibility Grant, but does not eliminate them. This doesn't reduce federal spending. We need to reduce send and eliminate programs!

Finally, H.R. 5 does eliminate the AYP requirement, but maintains requirements for states to develop their own "statewide accountability structure, a system of school improvement interventions to be implemented at the local level for ...schools the state determines to be poorly performing."  Just as in North Carolina, renaming common core under a different education standard mandates doesn't make it go away, rebranding AYP as a federally mandated state run requirement doesn't make AYP go away. See the brief above for more details.

Heritage Action has a great brief on what Congress SHOULD do! Please read it, then follow the instructions in the email from HA that I cut and pasted below.

If you click on the link in the email below, you can contact your representative and tell them to vote NO! If you are in NC05, please don't forget to sign the petition on my website. I will be hand delivering these to her office on Tuesday afternoon!

The Bush-Era No Child Left Behind law created a culture of extreme testing and oppressive federal intervention on students, teachers and school administrators. 
Next week the House will vote to reauthorize No Child Left Behind (H.R. 5). 
If they act, they will be extending this outdated education policy through 2021. 
No Child Left Behind must be stopped. America deserves a bold, conservative plan for education reform. We can’t allow Congress to pass old policy and old plans and hope for new results. 
Thank you for fighting for America's future.

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