Monday, July 06, 2015

Finally! Overhauled NCLB Get Public Airing

From Senator Patty Murray's office:

TOMORROW - Floor Debate Begins on Sen. Murray’s 
Bill to Fix “No Child Left Behind”


(Washington, D.C.) –  Nearly everyone agrees the 2001 No Child Left Behind (NCLB) law is badly broken. The law set ambitious goals without giving schools the resources they needed to help students succeed. It over-emphasized the importance of test scores, and it mandated a one-size-fits-all approach for struggling schools, which hindered, rather than helped, a school’s efforts to increase student achievement.  Tomorrow, Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) will speak on the Senate floor to kick off the Senate debate with Republican Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-TN). Murray will lay out why No Child Left Behind needs to be fixed, what it will mean for Washington state, and what she will be working on as the bill is debated on the Senate floor and beyond.
In recent years, the U.S. Department of Education began issuing waivers to states to exempt them from the law’s requirements, giving the states some flexibility as long as they adhered to certain conditions. Last year, Washington became the first state to lose its waiver from NCLB. Washington lost flexibility for $38 million in federal grant money and 88 percent of its schools were labeled as “failing,” leading to confusion and uncertainty for parents, students, teachers, and schools.

This year, Sen. Patty Murray, the top Democrat on the Senate education committee, worked with her Republican counterpart to write the bipartisan “Every Child Achieves Act.” The ECAA would fix the badly-broken No Child Left Behind law, and would help ensure all students have access to a high-quality public education. (Read Sen. Murray’s Seattle Times op-ed here.)

WHO:            U.S. Senator Patty Murray
                       
WHAT:          Debate on Every Child Achieves Act

WHEN:          TOMORROW, July 7th, 2015
                       Approximately 11:30 AM PST/2:30 PM EST (Subject to change)

WHERE:       U.S. Senate Floor

WATCH:       Live on C-SPAN 2  

Here’s what Sen. Murray’s bill – “Every Child Achieves Act,” or ECAA -- would mean for Washington state:

·         Eliminates the need for Washington (and all states) to get a waiver from the federal government
·         Gives Washington state the flexibility to establish accountability systems that are evidence-based and meet the unique needs of schools and communities
·         Reduces the emphasis on tests so students and teachers can spend less time on test prep and more time on learning
·         Maintains assessments to measure student progress, so parents, teachers, and communities know how students are doing in school and can see how their school stacks up to others in the district, state, and country. However, states will be able to use multiple measures in their accountability systems – not just test scores
·         Includes dedicated funding to support early childhood learning
·         Helps level the playing field for students who live in poverty
·         Ensures programs to help English-language learners are effective
·         Provides support for tribal communities, and communities that serve a high number of military families

The Every Child Achieves Act supports programs that enhance learning and improve student achievement
·         Literacy programs
·         STEM
·         Afterschool programs
·         School counseling
·         Physical education
                  ·         Innovation in measuring progress
·         Education technology and closing the digital divide
·         New emphasis on preserving Native American and Alaskan native languages

What’s next for Sen. Murray’s bill:
After passing unanimously through the Senate education committee on April 16, 2015, the bill now moves to the full Senate floor. Sen. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has scheduled floor debate to begin on the bill Tuesday, July 7, 2015.

At the same time, the House is considering its own bill. If both the House and the Senate pass bills, they will go into conference for a final version, before going to the president’s desk to be signed into law.

14 comments:

Melissa Westbrook said...

Yes, Dan, I would like to ask the Senator about the charter school issue.

Anonymous said...

Am I the only one that finds it ironic that Sen. Patty Murray home states largest school district has failed so miserably in providing services under the IDEA, yet she wants to "FIX" the nations? As the top Democrat on the Senate education committee, she can't even tend to her own county's largest school district. Give me a break!

CCC

Anonymous said...

A U.S. Senator has no power or authority on their own to do anything to fix what ails a specific school district. Neither does the Governor, the County Executive, nor the Mayor (thank whatever Deity you acknowledge).

Only the elected school board and their employee--the superintendent--have the power and authority to do that.

Senator Murray is doing the only thing she can do. She is using the powers granted to her office to propose legislation that will reset the horribly broken education policy that was the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (sometimes called "No Child Left Behind").

Note: Senator Murray's proposed legislation has nothing whatsoever to do with IDEA--the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. That is a completely different law.

--Just Me

Anonymous said...

Good job Senator Murray, vaya con dios.

-NNNCr

Anonymous said...

A US senator welds enormous influence couple that with her sitting on the Senate education committee and she would just need to make a phone call. I believe she purposely distanced herself from the SPS train wreck. A group of parents met with her aid in Seattle 16 months ago and presented documents showing misappropriation of Federal IDEA part B funds, documents showing SPS claimed and received $127,000 in part B funding, but did not provide any services for those students. Provided documents showing SPS knew they were not going to provide the services due to lack of special education teachers but still accepted the funding and spent it else where.

How embarrassing for Murray to have her states largest district in such disarray. If I where her opposition I would tell her to get her own house in order before telling others what they should be doing. I'm not disagreeing with the changes she want's to NCLB just pointing out where her priorities are mixed up.

CCC

Anonymous said...

Again Murry tries and staff students with disabilities. Murry is a lose cannon!


Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) is leading an effort to support to include language in the ECAA that would ensure students, after not meeting state-set academic and graduation goals for two years or more, would be provided targeted intervention and instructional support proportional to their need. This would also create better accountability for the appropriate use of limited Title I dollars to meet the needs of struggling students including students with disabilities, students who are poor, minority students and students learning English.

To gain support from parents of students with disabilities, language must be included that assures states help districts and schools provide targeted instruction and other supports when students in any school struggle to meet reading, math or graduation goals.

Without this critical addition, the current ECAA would allow students with disabilities not meeting state-set goals to remain invisible in nearly every school in the state!

Chairman Alexander (R-TN) and Ranking Member Murray (D-WA) are urging quick Senate action; however, without this important addition, the current bill is harmful to students with disabilities and does not support their progress so they can become career-ready and/or enter college. Senators need to hear from you now to support this important amendment.


CCC

Anonymous said...

Uhhh Just Me, what planet do you live on? Of course IDEA and NCLB overlap. Students with disabilities ARE GENERAL EDUCATION STUDENTS FIRST. So, NCLB applies to them. Specifically, how they should be tested, measured, accommodated etc. There should be accountability, but not mindless unlimited testing, especially if inappropriate. There should be many meaningful outcome possibilities. There should be paths out of high school that lead to maximum independence and maximization of potential. Funny. Everyone else takes that as fundamental, maximizing potential. But students with disabilities are ALWAYS reminded that they only deserve a "floor of opportunity", "reasonably calculated to confer SOME benefit". We want some potential maximizing too! NCLB could be an avenue. Not sure Murray gets it though.

Speddie

Anonymous said...

Isn't any hearing, on any part of this horribly flawed, dysfunctional, corrupt, and punitive legislation, at long last, a good thing? Does Murray get zero credit for that?

So, why are some in a pissing match by comment #3? Can we keep our eye on the ball here?

It seems to me we could all agree that there is almost no part or aspect of SPS that cannot and should not be vastly improved, especially given the budget it has, the number of administrative employees, and the constant open-door policy toward interlopers and profiteers who want to track, classify, profile, and capture every bit of personal information about every one of our kids for future commercial purposes. Big system, lots of problems. No doubt about it.

Give Murray credit for doing something, at long last, and don't waste this opportunity to weigh in on a very, very bad law that introduced some of the worst policies and practices into our schools in decades, including institutional blackmail, such as "Race To The Top" and the literally impossible to achieve requirement that all public schools make AYP or lose their funding. NCLB was the first of many "poison pill" legislative efforts to weaken support for public education and privatize as much of it as possible throughout the U.S.

So, big kudos to Murray for taking it on, and we should all be calling, e-mailing and voicing our support for her efforts, not mocking them. WSDWG

Anonymous said...

WSDWG wrote:

NCLB was the first of many "poison pill" legislative efforts to weaken support for public education and privatize as much of it as possible throughout the U.S.

Lets not be applauding Murray just yet.

Read the section of Every Child Achieves Act on Charter Schools....

It seems like efforts to continue "legislative efforts to weaken support for public education and privatize as much of it as possible throughout the U.S." will be doing just swell via Murray's Every Child Achieves Act.

-- Dan Dempsey

Anonymous said...

House-votes-to-renew-NCLB 218-213

Passage fell narrowly along party lines on a vote of 218-213, with 27 Republicans joining all Democrats in opposition to nearly derail it on the floor.

Conservative lawmakers had pushed for the adoption of several amendments allowing schools to opt out of No Child Left Behind requirements. Only one of those amendments, from Rep. Matt Salmon (R-Ariz.), was adopted, with lawmakers voting 251-178 to allow parents to exempt their children from testing.

Parents are becoming increasingly fed up with such constant and onerous testing requirements, as well as the teachers,” Salmon said during floor debate.

A separate proposal from Reps. Mark Walker (R-N.C.) and Ron DeSantis (R-Fla.) would have allowed states to opt out of No Child Left Behind and still receive federal funding. That amendment failed 195-235, as 49 Republicans aligned with Democrats to defeat it.

Heritage Action, an influential conservative group, said the opt-out amendment was critical for passage.

“The underlying bill is not worth passing unless this amendment is adopted,” Heritage Action CEO Michael Needham said.

-- Dan Dempsey

Anonymous said...

Senate

Today, the U.S. Senate continued its consideration of S. 1177, the Every Child Achieves Act of 2015 (ECAA) a bill to reauthorize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) which is currently known as the No Child Left BehindAct (NCLB). Today’s debate, managed by its coauthors, Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Ranking Member Patty Murray (D-WA) began amicably as the Senators set the framework for the DAY’S business; however, by afternoon’s end, the result of a few sharp words and party philosophical divides had taken their toll. The deliberations and subsequent votes started with a sweeping voice vote [98 to 0] in support of Senator JACK Reed (D-RI) and Senator Thad Cochran’s (R-MS) amendment (#2085) which improves support for school libraries followed by two voice votes to adopt amendments #2078 and #2086 offered by Sens. Michael Rounds (R-SD) and Mark Warner (D-VA) respectively (see chart for more).

Following a mid-day break, the Senate reconvened to discuss and then vote upon a range of amendments including increasing data disaggregation for Asian-Pacific Islanders as a new group in the ESEA accountability framework; grants to support programs for Tribes; and finally the portability of all Title I funds. With bipartisan support from Senator Mazie Hirono (D-HI) and Senator Dean Heller (R-NV) amendment #2109 was surprisingly defeated by a vote of 50 to 47. And, although Chairman Alexander spoke against Senator John Tester’s (D-MT) amendment #2107 to restore certain programs for Indian Tribes, the amendment was passed by a vote of 56 to 41. The final recorded vote of the day occurred on Chairman Alexander’s amendment #2139 which would have provided portability of all Title I funds to be made available as scholarships to public or private schools worth $2,100.00 each to 11 million children meeting federally-defined poverty requirements. The Chairman requested that the vote meet the 60 affirmative vote requirement; thus, when the votes were tallied, the amendment was defeated 52 to 45. The Senate completed their work for the day on the bill by approving two additional amendments by voice vote: Senator Murray’s amendment (#2124) to increase equity in sports and Senator MICHAEL Bennet’s (D-CO) amendment (#2115) calling for a GAO study on all existing federal agency services intended to support students.

Anonymous said...

Has the state removed the child from the parent? Huhh??

-- The opt-out amendment might be viewed as completely meaningless in WA State as parents have always had the right to opt-out.

However schools were in fear of having less than 95% of their students involved in testing. As a result several teachers who made parents aware of their right to opt-out were driven out of teaching.

The idea that parents need to have an opt-out provision attached to this bill demonstrates the huge amount of control the Congress and the US Dept of Ed believes they have over your child's education. ... Shame on them. "Land of the Free?" hardly.

-- Dan Dempsey

Anonymous said...

At 5:41 PM

Once again a piece without an author, so I will claim it.
-----
Senate

Today, the U.S. Senate continued its consideration of S. 1177, the Every Child Achieves Act of 2015 (ECAA) a bill to reauthorize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) which is currently known as the No Child Left BehindAct (NCLB). Today’s debate, managed by its coauthors, Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Ranking Member Patty Murray (D-WA) began amicably as the Senators set the framework for the DAY’S business; however, by afternoon’s end, the result of a few sharp words and party philosophical divides had taken their toll. The deliberations and subsequent votes started with a sweeping voice vote [98 to 0] in support of Senator JACK Reed (D-RI) and Senator Thad Cochran’s (R-MS) amendment (#2085) which improves support for school libraries followed by two voice votes to adopt amendments #2078 and #2086 offered by Sens. Michael Rounds (R-SD) and Mark Warner (D-VA) respectively (see chart for more).

Following a mid-day break, the Senate reconvened to discuss and then vote upon a range of amendments including increasing data disaggregation for Asian-Pacific Islanders as a new group in the ESEA accountability framework; grants to support programs for Tribes; and finally the portability of all Title I funds. With bipartisan support from Senator Mazie Hirono (D-HI) and Senator Dean Heller (R-NV) amendment #2109 was surprisingly defeated by a vote of 50 to 47. And, although Chairman Alexander spoke against Senator John Tester’s (D-MT) amendment #2107 to restore certain programs for Indian Tribes, the amendment was passed by a vote of 56 to 41. The final recorded vote of the day occurred on Chairman Alexander’s amendment #2139 which would have provided portability of all Title I funds to be made available as scholarships to public or private schools worth $2,100.00 each to 11 million children meeting federally-defined poverty requirements. The Chairman requested that the vote meet the 60 affirmative vote requirement; thus, when the votes were tallied, the amendment was defeated 52 to 45. The Senate completed their work for the day on the bill by approving two additional amendments by voice vote: Senator Murray’s amendment (#2124) to increase equity in sports and Senator MICHAEL Bennet’s (D-CO) amendment (#2115) calling for a GAO study on all existing federal agency services intended to support students.

-- Dan Dempsey

Anonymous said...

If you wish to follow how WA got into Common Core & SBAC
go to this timeline and look at:

January 7, 2011,
Cooperative Agreement Between the U.S. Department of Education and the SMARTER Balanced Assessment Consortium and the State of Washington (fiscal agent).

February 1, 2011
The Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts and Mathematics: Analysis and Recommendations Report to the Legislature. Report submitted to legislature by Superintendent of Public Instruction Randy Dorn as required by ESSB 6696. The report shows estimated five year implementation costs of $182.6 million, not including assessments or technology. Local school district will be responsible for 90.6% of the cost.

July 20, 2011
Superintendent Dorn formally adopts the Common Core State Standards.

December 2011
Common Core State Standards: Implementation Activities, Timelines, Costs, and Input on Enhancements. Report submitted to legislature by Superintendent of Public Instruction Randy Dorn. Estimated implementation costs about $23 million, $159.6 million less than previous estimate.

-- Dan Dempsey