Parents: No Child Left Behind Rewrite Furthers Federal Intrusion on Education

Dec 1, 2015 by

By Allison Nielsen –

A group of Florida parents is joining forces with 200 other parent groups across the country to fight against a 2015 overhaul of the No Child Left Behind Act set to be voted on by Congress this week.

No Child Left Behind, which is the current version of the 1965 Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), requires all states across the country to help each individual student develop basic skills necessary for educational success. Under the federal statute, states must administer assessment tests to measure academic progress.

The rewrite of No Child Left Behind is supposed to lessen federal control over education, but Florida Parents Against Common Core and other education groups around the nation say the ESEA would do just the opposite, expanding federal influence and intruding in education.

To voice their concerns, FPACC and other concerned parents took to Twitter for a 21st-century “rally” protesting the statute.

For all of Monday, thousands of tweets flew against the ESEA and the U.S. House of Representatives-driven Student Success Act and the Senate-created Every Student Achieves Act, both of which national lawmakers say will lessen federal influence over education.

“SSA and ECAA further cement an already dysfunctional federal government model for education where federal coercion relative to funding, and not sound education policy, determine individual states’ statutory education outcomes as well as standards and curriculum policy,” FPACC president Luz Gonzalez explained.

Gonzalez said the “far-reaching collusion” between federal and state legislatures is against the real model of local control, something many education groups feel is the best course of action for a sound education policy.

She and over 4,000 others tweeted up a storm on Monday, criticizing the ESEA for being an extension of the highly controversial Common Core State Standards, which have been implemented in most states nationwide.

A significant amount of the backlash against the ESEA stemmed from its connection with the standards.

Dr. Karen Effrem, founder of Florida Stop Common Core Coalition, was one Floridian joining in the chorus against the rewrite.

“America cannot survive with an uneducated, indoctrinated citizenry!” she wrote on her own Twitter account.

Many protesters hit the ESEA reauthorization for its 95 percent testing mandate, which requires 95 percent of students to participate in assessment tests, a number which could easily be tipped by parents choosing to opt their children out of standardized tests.

“These congressional bills totally disregard parental rights by removing the one component that would allow parents to opt-out their children from testing,” Luz Gonzalez wrote.

Others criticized the reauthorization because Congress didn’t release the full text of the bill — all 1,059 pages — until just a few days before national lawmakers are scheduled to vote on it.

“So much of this process is taking place behind closed doors..with back door and back room negotiations and no sunlight and no input from people who are most affected,” said Fox News Channel commentator Michelle Malkin in a live stream recorded Monday.

Malkin said there should be public hearings and commentary on the legislation on top of discussion with national legislators on the “expansion” of Common Core.

She also praised her fellow activists for taking to social media to make their opinions known, keeping the debate fresh, modern and far-reaching.

“It’s a way of forcing yourself into the public debate that would have never been possible before,” she said.

See all the tweets from Monday’s Twitter protest here.

 

Source: Parents: No Child Left Behind Rewrite Furthers Federal Intrusion on Education | Sunshine State News | Florida Political News

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