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Will a divided Congress overhaul ‘No Child Left Behind?’

January 20, 2011

That is a question on the minds of many education leaders and advocates around the country as Congress begins a new session. 

Education policy is expected to be mentioned in President Obama’s State of the Union speech next week. The Obama administration has pushed for an overhaul of the “No Child Left Behind Act,” the Bush Administration’s version of what’s also known as the federal Elementary And Secondary Education Act.

Lawmakers discussed but did not take action on the issue during the last session.

Education Week reports ESEA is considered outdated by politicians and advocates on both sides of the political aisle, but changing it is likely to require a pitched campaign by President Obama and Education Secretary Arne Duncan.

“No Child Left Behind” requires schools to bring all students to proficiency on standardized state tests. The Obama administration has proposed modifications that include tying teacher evaluations to student test scores and requiring states to prepare students for college rather than focusing solely on test performance.

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