Sep 23, 2011

Michelle's Reaction To Sec. Duncan's Announcement On NCLB Waivers [Or, Let Me Be Really Nebulous. It's All I Got!!]

There's no question that NCLB needs to be reformed to create a landscape in every district and state where we know what excellent schools and teaching look like, where there are accountability measures in place to make the reforms to NCLB meaningful, and to remove bureaucratic obstacles to implement the necessary changes.

If Secretary Duncan can expedite reform efforts as he did with Race to the Top, we welcome this strategy so long as there are strong accountability measures in place to ensure children have the best teachers. The need to be vigilant on this front as we move forward is especially important given the loss of turnaround measures that promoted accountability.

But the necessity of these waivers in the absence of Congressional action in fixing what we all know is a broken system highlights that we can't wait for change to come from the top down.  Reform starts in the grassroots. Around the country hundreds of thousands of StudentsFirst members --parents, teachers and concerned citizens -- are working with local leaders to implement reform that will usher in a culture of professionalism and accountability to ensure all children have the best teachers possible. From states as disparate as Maine and Nevada, we are working in a bipartisan way to get things done.

We look forwarded to continuing to work with the Administration and local officials to make sure these waivers produce the best results for our kids.

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