Monday, July 02, 2007

False Analogy 

The Editors of the Washington Post, in saying that the No Child Left Behind Law should be re-authorized despite it's flaws, make the analogy between the legislation and a house in need of repair.

No one in his right mind would demolish his home because it had a leaky basement or it needed new carpeting. But that's the approach being advocated by those who find fault with the No Child Left Behind Act.
But this comparison is wrong. Properly stated, it would be not only logical but necessary to tear down a home if it were built on land that did not belong to the homeowner. This is essentially what Congress and the President did when they passed NCLB. There is no power granted to the Federal Government by the U.S. Constitution over public education. That authority is reserved for the states. And while some may argue that localities can opt-out of NCLB by not accepting Title I money I not found such an escape valve. As I have pointed out the goals of NCLB seem incompatable to me with schools, like the Doar School, that are trying innovative ways to teach. How can you do something completely different when you are graded on whether your institutuion made AYP?

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