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NCLB: Blueprint Commentary Cheat Sheet

Terror_scale_001 Want to know what all the smartypants at National Journal are saying about the Duncan blueprint but don't have time to read through all their blather?  Me, neither.  But now you can check out this entirely unofficial but extremely handy dandy summary, which may or may not be entirely accurate but will save you a lot of time. Not that I can see that anyone's said anything particularly brilliant or new, or that there many people who's opinions you don't already know or can't easily predict.  As I and others have noted over the past week, the Duncan blueprint isn't particularly Hill-friendly, may not fully address the underlying issue of teacher salaries, may not measure schools any better than NCLB does, and seems increasingly unlikely to be considered and passed this year.  I guess that was pretty predictable, though. :-)

 Sandy Kress – Very disappointed. Only focusing on the worst 5 % is a mistake. This is too ‘loose’ an approach of accountability. More federal pressure to ensure disadvantaged students are being served well is needed.


Diane Ravitch—Still too focused on ‘measure and punish,’ the prescription for lowest 5 % is worse than current NCLB tactics.


Ellen Moir – Applauds the focus on teachers as professionals laid out in blueprint. Collecting teacher survey data on professional support and working conditions is a great idea.


Rep. John Kline – Lack of specifics on the blueprint is a good thing. The gov is on a slippery slope when it comes to nationalization of standards and assessment.


Richard Rothstein –Blueprint has some good thoughts but a host of problems. The economic recession and fiscally starved public schools are not compatible with the competitive funding propositions. Middle class students may be entirely left out of accountability. Best hope for blueprint at moment is that it may lead to the Secretary handing out waivers to states for non-compliance with current NCLB.


Rick Hess – A lighter federal role on school intervention is a good thing, but Hess isn’t convinced it won’t turn out to be more prescriptive than the rhetoric would lead you to believe. Replacing AYP and removing burdensome--but no necessarily helpful--sanctions is a good thing.


Rob Manwaring—Transitioning to the new regime will be a challenge, admin needs to think this one through.


Steve Peha – Blueprint doesn’t present a vision for a new form of education, which is needed for ed reform. Without a new vision on form, it’s not  possible to evaluate the blueprint.


Monty Neill – Blueprint relies too heavily on standardized testing. Congress should largely reject it and construct a new one.


Tom Vander Ark –Blueprint gives up on promise to ensure every American family that they have access to at least one good school. Dropping tutoring and school choice for parents is disappointing. There are other good aspects to Blueprint.


Sherman Dorn—The blueprint takes steps in the right direction. CCR is an improvement over AYP, schools can’t be measured in the same way: They face different problems. Not enough research to support turnaround prescriptions; let’s invest in research on that.


Deborah McGriff—blueprint keeps hope alive. Those criticizing competitive funding as an attack on equality in education miss the point: Formula funding hasn’t produced equality. Disappointed that school choice wasn’t replaced with something else.


Michael Lomax—Blueprint is a good step forward. It’s important to remember that it’s a beginning, not a conclusion. Student-lending reform and ESEA show admin’s commitment to a comprehensive policy on education.

Michael L. Lomax, Steve Peha, Deborah McGriff, Sherman Dorn, Tom Vander Ark, Monty Neill, Steve Peha, Eliza Krigman, Frederick M. Hess, Richard Rothstein, Rep. John Kline, Ellen Moir, Diane Ravitch, Sandy Kress


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