NCLB: No, It Didn't Really Happen That Way
A couple of things about NCLB, in order to avoid repeating mistakes or being misguided by slanted information:
First and foremost, no matter how many times people say it, NCLB didn't label struggling schools "failing." Do you really think they were idiots just because they didn't have iPhones yet?
Second, while there's much to admire in Kevin Carey's "requiem" for NCLB, the relentless campaign against the law by the teachers unions -- remember the lawsuits? -- and shameless Democratic flip-flop against the law -- ostensibly to help John Kerry get elected in 2004 -- must be emphasized in any assessment of the law's political and media misfortunes.
Last but not least, the newer generation of reform groups and funders -- TFA, KIPP, Gates, and Broad -- are and have always been ambivalent at best about the law, even though it matched them rhetorically and generated the annual test scores and scrutiny for district schools upon which many reform ideas rely. They didn't help write it, fight for it, or defend it, and remain generally focused on innovation rather than accountability. Freeloaders!