A report conducted by the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, in conjunction with the Kingsbury Center, revealed that a school making adequate progress in one state would be considered failing in another.
This situation is yet another illustration of how I agree with NCLB in theory but not in practice.
I love the idea of creating a vision (i.e., standards), planning assessments that measure achievement of the vision (i.e., standardized tests), and then aligning instruction with the assessments.
However, if states are left to their own devices to create the vision and the assessment, they also have the liberty to dilute expectations for their children (ahem, Mississippi, I’m looking at you).
Creating national standards would also save a lot of money. Just imagine how much each state spends to develop and revise their standards. Then multiply that by 50.
Plus, families are more mobile these days. National standards would ensure more continuity from state to state.
Finally, we would have a clearer and more accurate picture of which states are letting their students slip through the cracks.
The Tampa Tribune says:
“I know that talking about standards can make people nervous,” Education Secretary Arne Duncan said recently.
“But the notion that we have 50 different goal posts doesn’t make sense,” Duncan said. “A high school diploma needs to mean something, no matter where it’s from.”
Every state, he said, needs standards that make kids college- and career-ready and are benchmarked against international standards.