Tuesday, April 14, 2015


The US Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions is discussing this bill now!  Call the committee members and tell them to vote NO, should this come to a vote.

Republicans by Rank

Lamar Alexander (TN)
Michael B. Enzi (WY)
Richard Burr (NC)
Johnny Isakson (GA)
Rand Paul (KY)
Susan Collins (ME)
Lisa Murkowski (AK)
Mark Kirk (IL)
Tim Scott (SC)
Orrin G. Hatch (UT)
Pat Roberts (KS)
Bill Cassidy, M.D. (LA)

Democrats by Rank

Patty Murray (WA)
Barbara A. Mikulski (MD)
Bernard Sanders (I) (VT)
Robert P. Casey, Jr. (PA)
Al Franken (MN)
Michael F. Bennet (CO)
Sheldon Whitehouse (RI)
Tammy Baldwin (WI)
Christopher S. Murphy (CT)
Elizabeth Warren (MA)

Now that Alexander and Murray have reached an "agreement" we fear that this bill has a better chance of passing:

Alexander, Murray Announce Bipartisan Agreement on Fixing “No Child Left Behind”

"What the Every Child Achieves Act does:
  • Strengthens state and local control: The bill recognizes that states, working with school districts, teachers, and others, have the responsibility for creating accountability systems to ensure all students are learning and prepared for success. These accountability systems will be state-designed but must meet minimum federal parameters, including ensuring all students and subgroups of students are included in the accountability system, disaggregating student achievement data, and establishing challenging academic standards for all students. The federal government is prohibited from determining or approving state standards."  THIS IS NOT REALLY STATE CONTROL, NOW IS IT?!?
  • "Maintains important information for parents, teachers, and communities: The bill maintains the federally required two tests in reading and math per child per year in grades 3 through 8 and once in high school, as well as science tests given three times between grades 3 and 12. These important measures of student achievement ensure that parents know how their children are performing and help teachers support students who are struggling to meet state standards. A pilot program will allow states additional flexibility to experiment with innovative assessment systems within states. The bill also maintains annual reporting of disaggregated data of groups of children, which provides valuable information about whether all students are achieving, including low-income students, students of color, students with disabilities, and English learners." THE FEDERAL GOV. WILL CONTINUE TO MANDATE STANDARDIZED TESTS.  ALTHOUGH, STATES WILL BE ALLOWED TO EXPERIMENT ON OUR CHILDREN!
  • "Ends federal test-based accountability: The bill ends the federal test-based accountability system of No Child Left Behind, restoring to states the responsibility for determining how to use federally required tests for accountability purposes. States must include these tests in their accountability systems, but will be able to determine the weight of those tests in their systems. States will also be required to include graduation rates, a measure of postsecondary and workforce readiness, English proficiency for English learners. States will also be permitted to include other measures of student and school performance in their accountability systems in order to provide teachers, parents, and other stakeholders with a more accurate determination of school performance." STATES MUST STILL USE STANDARDIZED TESTS IN ACCOUNTABILITY - THE FEDERAL GOV. WILL PERMIT STATES TO INCLUDE OTHER MEASURES.  THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT WILL PERMIT!!
  • "Maintains important protections for federal taxpayer dollars: The bill maintains important fiscal protections of federal dollars, including maintenance of effort requirements, which help ensure that federal dollars supplement state and local education dollars, with additional flexibility for school districts in meeting those requirements."   FLEXIBILITY ONLY IF THE DISTRICTS MEET FEDERAL REQUIREMENTS!
  • "Helps states fix the lowest-performing schools: The bill includes federal grants to states and school districts to help improve low performing schools that are identified by the state accountability systems. School districts will be responsible for designing evidence-based interventions for low performing schools, with technical assistance from the states, and the federal government is prohibited from mandating, prescribing, or defining the specific steps school districts and states must take to improve those schools."  STATES GET TO FIX LOWEST PERFORMING SCHOOLS BASED PARTIALLY ON STANDARDIZED TESTS THAT NO ONE CAN SEE!!
  • "Helps states support teachers: The bill provides resources to states and school districts to implement activities to support teachers, principals, and other educators, including allowable uses of funds for high quality induction programs for new teachers, ongoing rigorous professional development opportunities for teachers, and programs to recruit new educators to the profession. The bill allows, but does not require, states to develop and implement teacher evaluation systems." MONEY IS PROVIDED FOR ONGOING "PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT".
  • "Reaffirms the states’ role in determining education standards: The bill affirms that states decide what academic standards they will adopt, without interference from Washington, D.C. The federal government may not mandate or incentivize states to adopt or maintain any particular set of standards, including Common Core. States will be free to decide what academic standards they will maintain in their states."  THIS MEANS NOTHING.  STATES WILL STILL BE REQUIRED TO USE AND TEACH TO STANDARDS.  OUTCOME BASED EDUCATION IS OUTCOME BASED EDUCATION REGARDLESS OF WHICH STANDARDS THE STATES CHOOSE TO SUBJECT OUR CHILDREN TO!
The federal government does not need to reaffirm the states' role in education, period.