NCLB, We Hardly Knew Ye

Politics K-12 has a good summary of EdSec Duncan’s weekend offer to states: adopt RtTT style reforms, and  we’ll relax those pesky NCLB requirements that you hate. Andy Rotherham has a smart take here, basically arguing that most of federal policy under Obama/Duncan has already made some of this moot.

So, you basically have Duncan pulling the levers at his disposal, in spite of a sclerotic congress. And with this move – set against RtTT, SIG, and a host of other activities – NCLB continues to die, not in one swift motion, but by the proverbial thousand paper cuts.

While the policy and politics play out at the federal level, I’m worried about what schools, teachers, and principals are going to do amidst the inevitable communications headache that comes with this new information. Districts already have a hard enough time implementing the dictates of federal policy. While policy makers might be able to understand the realpolitik of federal policy suddenly becoming “moot,” I predict messiness as educators try to figure out what to do amidst the ambiguity.

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