Kidd Says NCLB Unreasonable

By: Laura Speakman
By: Laura Speakman

In Rockingham County, Wilbur S. Pence Middle School missed the "No Child Left Behind" benchmark. This is not a huge concern for Dr. John Kidd, Rockingham County Schools Superintendent. Kidd is the former president of the Virginia Association of School Superintendents. He says he's not the only one who thinks the pass rate is unfair.

"We're having schools singled out as being deficient while we're flying this ship before the alterations are made. And that's not a good situation," said Kidd.

Kidd says he believes there's too much focus on the idea of pass, fail.

"The federal government did not take time to take a look at the different standards," said Kidd. "They just said what that pass rate has to be."

Kidd believes the Federal Government could learn some lessons from Virginia.

"Some tests have even been changed because they recognized very quickly that the test was far too difficult for the population of kids taking the test. The federal government needs to do the same thing," said Kidd.

Now he, along with other administrators, is working to have the government revise the No Child Left Behind law.

"We have listed a group of concerns and given them to our law makers. Have you received anything back? We have not received anything back yet," said Kidd.

Dr. Kidd suggests that along with the tests, individual evaluations should take place. As far a removing the tests completely, he said they're here to stay. Extended Web Coverage

No Child Left Behind

  • President George W. Bush signed into law the “No Child Left Behind Act” on Jan. 8, 2002.

  • This law changes the federal government’s role in kindergarten through grade-12 education by asking America’s schools to describe their success in terms of what each student accomplishes.

  • The act contains the President’s four basic education reform principles:
    • Stronger accountability of r results.
    • Increased flexibility and local control.
    • Expanded option for parents.
    • An emphasis on teaching methods that have been proven to work.

    Accountability for Test Results

    • Beginning in the 2002-03 school year, schools must administer tests in each of three grade spans: grades 3-5, grades 6-9, and grades 10-12 in all schools.
    • Results of these tests will show up in annual state and district report cards, so parents can measure their school's performance and their state's progress.
    • These reports show us achievement gaps between students who are economically disadvantaged, from racial and ethnic minority groups, have disabilities, or have limited English proficiency. The report cards will also sort results by gender and migrant status.
    • Within twelve years, all students must perform at a proficient level under their state standards. But, states will set their own standards for each grade, so each state will say how well children should be reading at the end of third grade


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