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Fixing NCLB, the House Republican Way

Fixing NCLB, the House Republican Way_5fbee8aebed65.jpeg
Accountability ESEA NCLB Politics Reauthorization Valentina Korkes

Fixing NCLB, the House Republican Way

Fixing NCLB, the House Republican Way

The U.S. House of Representatives’ Education and Workforce Committee passed the Student Success Act, an overhaul of No Child Left Behind, to be sent to the full House the week of February 24.

The bill, passed out of committee along party lines, includes Title I portability, despite Democratic attempts to alter or eliminate this provision through amendments for a full substitute of the bill. In fact, none of the amendments introduced by Democrats were accepted into the passed bill, amendments that ranged from pre-kindergarten programs, accountability and interventions, and more.

After a long day of live-tweeting, Anne Hyslop of Bellwether Education Partners summarized the hearing pretty succinctly. It’s all about party lines:

Education Trust issued a statement, voicing its concerns about the potential impact of the bill’s portability provisions, its lack of accountability, and more:

While we are pleased to see that H.R. 5 maintains statewide annual assessments, other provisions of the bill will significantly weaken the law’s focus on the very groups of children who are at its heart—low-income children, racial minorities, English learners and students with disabilities. Together, these children are a solid majority of America’s children. We need to make sure that they are well educated.

Center for American Progress worries that the bill misses the mark in a number of ways:

The bill essentially writes a blank check to states by providing billions of dollars of federal support without any accountability for results and could dramatically shift funding from low-income schools to higher-wealth schools. The legislation would gut the historic federal role of protecting at-risk students.

The bill also misses an opportunity to invest in high-quality early childhood education, an intervention proven to improve long-term outcomes for disadvantaged students, and to increase investment in the nation’s teachers, the most important in-school factor in a student’s success. The legislation also rejects continued investment in innovation programs, which are designed to identify and bring to scale evidence-based approaches to learning.

Although no Democratic amendments were accepted, some GOP-introduced amendments were, including one aimed at teacher and student data privacy, another on reporting the achievement of military students, a measure reporting the annual cost savings of the reduced federal role of this bill, and a last amendment to delay using test scores of English-language learners in accountability measures.

All other amendments either failed or were withdrawn, with the exception of an amendment addressing the discrimination of LGBTQ students, introduced by Rep. Jared Polis, which was ruled not germane to the Student Success Act.

Photo from Wikipedia.

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