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No Child Left Behind
I have talked to many teachers and parents, No Child Left Behind (NCLB) has been a failure. Extreme pressure has been placed on school districts in lower socioeconomic areas where the challenges are the greatest. The pressure has hurt progress rather than helped. Predictably, school districts have reacted to the extreme pressure by gaming the system. In addition to the yearly tests, many districts have added practice tests and most of the school year is spent teaching to tests rather than preparing the students for long term success.
I propose a master teacher concept. This would be a national program where teaching methods related to each grade level and subject are studied, advanced and disseminated over the internet to teachers. The emphasis should be on identifying the problems and implementing improved methods.
We should return to neighborhood centered schools and get the parents involved. Discipline should be maintained and troublemakers separated from the willing learners.
Yearly tests should be used as just one means of
tracking student progress. A structured teacher evaluation of the student
should be another.