Texas has officially asked to be excused from several requirements of No Child Left Behind, a federal law that requires schools to meet academic benchmarks.

The Texas Education Agency announced Friday that it submitted a letter Thursday to U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan formally requesting a waiver from parts of the federal education law.

“Currently, school districts across Texas are forced to operate within two, often conflicting, accountability and intervention systems while taking valuable resources and time away from focusing on improving student achievement,” TEA Commissioner Michael Williams said in a statement. “The federal requirements and guidelines … have become an obsolete system that does not adequately reflect the performance of the state’s schools.”

President Barack Obama established a process in September 2011 for states to apply for flexibility from certain provisions of the law, originally signed by President George W. Bush.

As of Friday, 34 states plus Washington, D.C., had received waivers. Iowa and California have had applications denied. Texas, Wyoming and Pennsylvania submitted waiver requests this week, according to the Center on Education Policy.

Texas is asking that its state accountability system replace the federal targets, that a single system of interventions be created based on accountability results, that the TEA rely on the state’s teacher certification standards and that districts be allowed to implement schoolwide interventions, regardless of the poverty level on a campus.