- House Democrats hosted their own meeting about the No Child Left Behind re-authorization process on Capitol Hill Thursday, pushing to have their ideas heard in the new GOP-controlled Congress.
- In January, Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN), chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee, released a 400-page draft bill mapping out two different options for standardized testing. Rep. John Kline (R-MN), the chairman of the House Education and the Workforce Committee, released his own draft that keeps testing in place but gives states more authority over how and when tests are administered.
- The Kline bill would also allow Title I funding to follow students, which could benefit charter and voucher schools but hurt traditional public schools, and the Associated Press notes that a similar proposal passed the House in 2013 without the support of any Democrats.
Alexander is pushing for a bipartisan reauthorization in the Senate, but in the House, Democrats have complained of a "hasty, partisan push" in the rewrite. There are plenty of complicated relationships to consider with NCLB, especially when it comes to testing. For example, civil rights groups, which often fall in line with Democrats, are for testing and federal oversight, but teacher unions — also typically backing Democrats — feel too much emphasis has been placed on tests. It's likely that, no matter what, somebody is going to be unhappy with the end result. There are just too many conflicting priorities to appease those on both sides.