District Administration - March 2007 - (Page 23)

Warning : session_start : The session id contains invalid characters, valid characters are only a-z, A-Z and 0-9 in /mnt/data/www.nxtbook.com/fx/config_1.3/global.php on line 9 Warning : session_start : Cannot send session cache limiter - headers already sent output started at /mnt/data/www.nxtbook.com/fx/config_1.3/global.php:9 in /mnt/data/www.nxtbook.com/fx/config_1.3/global.php on line 9 Warning : Cannot modify header information - headers already sent by output started at /mnt/data/www.nxtbook.com/fx/config_1.3/global.php:9 in /mnt/data/www.nxtbook.com/fx/config_1.3/global.php on line 10 InsidetheLaw • Zach Miners The Five-Year Anniversary: Nina Rees Assesses NCLB F ive years have passed since President Bush enacted the No Child Left Behind law, and while progress is being made towards achievi ng its goals, the jury is still out on how it might be reauthorized and implemented in the coming years. Nina Rees, one of the law’s chief architects and former assistant deputy secretary for innovation and improvement at the U.S. Department of Education, shares her perspective on the real-world implementation of the law and the impact it has had on America’s education system. She now serves as senior vice president for strategic initiatives at the Knowledge Universe Learning Group, a Santa Monica-based company that invests in education products and services. What impact has NCLB had so far on the education research and investments at the federal level are necessary to really address this. Are the bill’s parental choice provisions—school transfer option and free tutoring programs—working? To some extent. While less than one percent of the eligible students are participati ng in choice, more than 450,000 students or nearly 20 percent of eligible students are participating in supplemental educational services. There is defi nitely room for improvement. Districts need more resources and capacity to educate parents about how to make good choices. DA : Rees: system? DA : Rees: While the standards and accountability movement has been around since the 1980s, NCLB is the fi rst attempt at the federal level to encourage districts to measure student progress on an annual basis against these standards and to hold schools accountable to ensure that all children regardless of race or income meet their state’s standards. But NCLB’s greatest cont r ibut ion has been the focus it has brought on the need and urgency to close the achievement gap. Is the achievement gap between whites and minorit ies really closing? Is it widening? At this stage it is difficult to say. It defi nitely isn’t widening. More sophisticated DA : Rees: How will the new Democrat ic majority factor into reauthorization? This is a good time to reauthorize the law, given that many of the original framers of the bill are still in leader sh ip roles Senator Kennedy, Congressman Miller and President Bush . I am not sure if the changes in party leadership will have a huge impact, though it will be interesting to see how leaders in both parties can bring their members to align around reauthorization without making too many fundamental changes to the law. What will be the focus of renewing the law? Strengthening math and science skills is a priorit y, and expanding the law to high schools is also something that needs to be worked out. Growth models, to “NCLB’s greatest contribution has been the focus it has brought on the need and urgency to close the achievement gap.” credit individual students progressi ng forward rather than only tracki ng student progress based on hitting benchmarks, will also be a hot topic. DA : Rees: DA : Rees: DA : Rees: How might NCLB be reworked to address our nation’s failing high schools? Business community groups like the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the Business Roundtable are working towards this goal and are heavily focused on high school reform. The quality of students who graduate and compete in the workforce are big concerns. How exactly the law will be expanded is unclear. Keeping the framework of NCLB intact while expanding the law at the same time is a huge task. March 2007 23 www.DistrictAdministration.com DA_307_insidethelaw ZMJH.indd 1 2/13/07 10:53:58 AM Warning : Unknown : The session id contains invalid characters, valid characters are only a-z, A-Z and 0-9 in Unknown on line 0 Warning : Unknown : Failed to write session data files . Please verify that the current setting of session.save_path is correct /var/lib/php/session in Unknown on line 0 http://www.DistrictAdministration.com

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of District Administration - March 2007

Contents
Editor's Letter
Update
Inside the Law
Curriculum Update
District Profile
Administrator Profile
Friday Night Fever
Creating an Effective Virtual School Program
Hunting for Talent
Multimedia Man
Do These Web Sites Work?
Finding Funds for Student Laptops
Curriculum Crassifieds
Gearing Up for Science Assessments
New Products
Computer Literature
Speaking Out
Principal Opinion
The Online Edge
Calendar of Events
Problem/Solution
Research Corner

District Administration - March 2007

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