The Associated Press is reporting that the U.S. Department of Education has officially granted Iowa a one-year grace period on meeting the No Child Left Behind Act’s proficiency targets, commonly known as adequate yearly progress. Iowa lawmakers have not approved any legislation that would tie teacher and principal evaluations in part to student performance, and the federal department subsequently decided that the Iowa department of education did not have the authority to enforce this requirement, a fact that led to the department declining to grant Iowa a waiver. This grace period gives Iowa legislators another session to pass a bill that satisfies federal officials.
I wrote last week about Iowa’s request to the federal department for a one-year “freeze” on meeting AYP under No Child Left Behind, after being turned down for a waiver by the department in June. After Politics K-12’s Alyson Klein and I wrote about those events, Alyson discovered that before Iowa announced its quest for the grace period, the department had been considering allowing states to qualify for just such “freeze,” provided that they meet certain requirements, such as requiring college- and career-ready standards, and demonstrate they are “on board” with the NCLB waiver process.
Will there be other states besides Iowa that get a grace period? Stay tuned.
A version of this news article first appeared in the State EdWatch blog.