Twenty six more states, plus the District of Columbia, are applying for waivers under the No Child Left Behind Act, which would free them from many of the core tenets of the law in exchange for adopting key reforms backed by the Obama administration. Already, 11 states have won this new flexibility.
Those applying are: Arkansas, Arizona, Connecticut, Delaware, Iowa, Idaho, Illinois, Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, Missouri, Mississippi, North Carolina, Nevada, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, and Wisconsin, along with D.C.
States seeking flexibility in the second round will be notified later this spring. The U.S. Department of Education expects additional states to request flexibility by Sept. 6 for the third round of review.
That leaves the following states that have not applied for a waiver: Alabama, Alaska, California, Hawaii (a troubled Race to the Top state!), Maine, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, Texas, West Virginia, and Wyoming.
New Hampshire and Maine have already said they need more time to figure out how to make the waiver requirements work in their rural states. Other states, like California, have already made their skepticism very clear.
Given that the Education Department approved all 11 requests for waivers from the first round, it seems very likely the vast majority of of these requests will be approved at some point. (Although certainly the department will seek changes before doing so.) Many states that have applied in this second round have posted their applications on their individual department websites. As soon as the federal Education Department posts copies of all application in one place, we’ll post a link.