In another sign that teachers are pushing to be heard as Congress works on a renewal of the No Child Left Behind Act, educators in California this week spoke out against the law’s testing-and-accountability system. In news conferences across the state sponsored by the California Teachers Association, teachers took particular aim at the NCLB’s requirement that all students score at proficient levels by 2014. “We’d like for all students to score at grade level—period—without that definite time,” said Dennis Kelly, president of the United Educators of San Francisco. “It’s education, not a car race.” The teachers said that schools should not be judged by test scores alone and that they should be recognized for improvements in student achievement, even if they don’t meet the law’s timeline. At the gathering in San Francisco, Mayor Gavin Newsom, who had dyslexia as a child, joined teachers in warning of the law’s potential negative effects on students: “If No Child Left Behind were enacted when I was a student, I would not be here. I would have failed miserably.”
A version of this news article first appeared in the Web Watch blog.