Idaho’s State Board of Education has asked the U.S. Department of Education to allow the state to restart the NCLB sanctions timeline because student achievement was measured with “an invalid and unreliable tool,” said Mike Rush, state board executive director, in this article in the Idaho Statesman.
At issue is the state’s “poorly written education standards” and the misalignment between the statewide assessments and what teachers are expected to teach, the article said.
It is doubtful that the Department would give the state a fresh start for hundreds of public schools now facing sanctions under the law. Ironically, the feds actually approved Idaho’s standards and assessment system a couple of years ago, see here.
Regardless of whether Idaho will be successful in its request, the message here is clear: given Congress’ inaction to reauthorize and improve the law this year, something needs to happen to prevent NCLB’s misguided sanctions from wrongly ensnaring even more schools. If a committee bill is not ready later this year, NSBA believes it will be time for Congress to suspend the implementation of severe sanctions against schools until reauthorization is completed. And when might that be? Check out Eduwonk’s and Ed Week’s David Hoff’s forecasts.