Thursday, October 11, 2007

Tell Congress to slow down and get NCLB right!

October is shaping up to be a critical month in the reauthorization of No Child Left Behind (also known as ESEA) as some members of congress appear to be rushing to pass legislation that will offer more bureaucracy, more mandates, and less help for students and educators. In fact, one proposal under consideration would link educator pay to student test scores. ISEA members should contact their representatives in Washington immediately and tell them that Congress needs to take the time to craft a bill that will get to the core of what is needed to help all students succeed.
Meanwhile, two critical bills have been introduced in the Senate that would make significant, meaningful changes to measuring student performance and school success -- including ending the over-reliance on standardized testing. One is the Improving Student Testing Act of 2007 (S. 2053) introduced by Senators Russ Feingold (D-WI) and Patrick Leahy (D-VT); and the other is The No Child Left Behind Reform Act (S. 1194) introduced by Senators Chris Dodd (D-CT) and Ken Salazar (D-CO). ISEA members should send a message to Sen. Tom Harkin urging him to sign on as a co-sponsor of these key bills. Also, please take a moment to call the Harkin district office nearest you and tell his Iowa staff how important it is for the Senator to co-sponsor these measures.

Harkin district offices: Des Moines, 515-284-4574; Cedar Rapids, 319-365-4505; Davenport, 563-322-1338; Dubuque, 563-582-2342; and Sioux City, 712-252-1550.