Saturday, May 05, 2007

NCLB assessed

The Nation came out with a useful primer this week on the issues around NCLB, including an overview by Linda Darling-Hammond and responses by Pedro Noguera, Velma L. Cobb and Deborah Meier. All respondents seem to agree on the problems with NCLB, including the lack of focus on socioeconomic barriers to student achievement and the misplaced accountability scheme. As Noguera puts it:
In the area of accountability, NCLB has opted for the path of least resistance, holding accountable the most vulnerable (students) and the least protected (principals), but not other parties--elected officials, senior school administrators, teachers and parents.
Darling-Hammond makes several recommendations for how to fix NCLB, including a "continuous improvement model," rather than the Adequate Yearly Progress model of the current legislation, and more investment in teacher education.

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