Perkins Bill Is Approved by Congress
Career, tech programs face more accountability.
Career and technical education programs will face new pressure to show that they are academically rigorous and guiding high school students through a lineup of courses that prepares them for college or the workplace, under a bill approved by Congress.
The reauthorization of the federal law known as the Perkins Act—dealing with what traditionally has been called vocational education—will not subject state and local programs to the stricter demands and penalties of the No Child Left Behind Act, however. Critics in some quarters, including the White House, have said that such programs should be held to much tougher standards than they currently face. Nevertheless, President Bush is expected to sign the legislation.
The measure requires that career-oriented programs receiving federal funds report test scores and graduation rates more consistently, under the rules of the 4½-year-old No Child Left Behind law. And it requires that states take a more active role in spelling out specific sequences of core academic and technical classes that students should follow...
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