Yet another sign of the apocalypse
Can any amount of money fix NCLB?
Apparently, Congressional leaders and President Bush met to push for renewal of NCLB, and Secretary Spellings tore herself away from her world travels long enough to attend. You can read the whole thing, but here's my favorite part:
Rep. George Miller, D-Calif., and Sen. Edward Kennedy, D-Mass. -- who chair committees overseeing education -- said they urged the president to propose funding increases for the law. Bush made no commitments, according to a congressional aide who was briefed on the discussions and spoke on the condition of anonymity because the meeting was private.
Democrats, who won control of Congress in November, say the administration and Republican lawmakers have underfunded the law by about $50 billion, compared to what was originally called for. Republicans say it is common practice for legislation to be funded at less than the full level.
While partisan sniping over the law has been common in recent years, the lawmakers attending Monday's meeting struck a bipartisan note and pledged to work together to get the law renewed for five more years. The united front is part of a strategy to fend off critics who want to see the law scrapped or drastically changed.
"This issue now has its detractors and those that are opposed to it. That's true in the Democratic party and the Republican party," Kennedy said.
Spellings listed a few areas of concern that came up during Monday's meeting. They included how to test special education and limited-English speaking students, a desire to give schools credit for progress even when they fall short of annual targets and ways to get students access to high-quality free tutoring.
I wonder what would happen if Congress passed a rule that no law could be put into practice unless it is fully funded-- just for fun. Naive, I am sure, but also logical. And that's why it's an idea that would never live inside the Beltway.
I'd also like to see my congresspeople work as many hours as I do. Then imagine doing that in front of a critical audience of restive teens who have been deprived of their cell phones for over three hours. Then try to juggle twelve flaming rings.
Then they might now what it's like to teach.