Saturday, August 18, 2012
North Carolina's NCLB Waivers: Recipe for Educational Disaster
A veteran teacher once told me in the early days of my career as an educator, "Be careful what you wish for. When federal and state agenices do away with one policy, they almost always come up with something much worse." In my naivete, I obviously did not believe that. I still had an unwavering faith in the system, and that those who make the rules always mean well and often know more about those things than I do. Now, 20 some years after that conversation, I have to admit, my old friend had many things right. When our policymakers and politicians do reform, revise, revamp, or scuttle an education policy, the result is always something much worse. Our current example of this? The Obama administration's transformation of No Child Left Behind to Race to the Top and the whole series of waivers states can apply for to escape the sanctions of NCLB, which most everyone agrees is a bad law, but a paralyzed federal government can't agree on how to fix. Take North Carolina as an example.