The No Child Left Behind Act is being left behind. New Texas Education Commissioner Michael Williams is following 33 other states in asking the U.S. Education Department for a waiver from the No Child Left Behind Act. The 11-year-old law that set federal standards all schools are supposed to meet.
"I am very pleased that our new commissioner has taken that leadership position," LISD Superintendent Karen Garza, said. "I think it is in the best interest of students in texas and our public school systems."
The reasoning behind the waiver request is that there are too many are not meeting those standards. No child left behind demands that 100 percent of students reach reading and math test standards by 2014.
"That is unrealistic," FISD Assistant Superintendent Darryl Flusche said. "We just have children for whatever circumstances are not going to be able to meet that threshold."
Garza said a major factor making the expectations unreasonable is the new STAAR test.
"It is particularly difficult when you have implemented a rigorous and difficult state assessment program," Garza said.
Straight-a students have a hard enough time with the test, average students really struggle. But special education students have to take it as well, making that 100 percent threshold that much harder to meet.
"There is a point at which we have to say is a standard and a sanction accountability system where 100 percent have to pass an assessment, is that really reasonable?" Garza asked.
"It is just unrealistic. we need to bring kids are far as we can, but at the same time when you have a threshold that high that discourages kids and takes away their desire to succeed," Flusche said.
Flusche said above all else the students need to be encouraged for what they can do, not discouraged by failure.