Federal

NCLB Once Again a Legislative Target of Minnesota Critics

By Katie Ash — January 15, 2008 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

When the Minnesota legislature reconvenes next month, state senators will debate whether the state should refuse to follow mandates under the No Child Left Behind Act—potentially forfeiting up to $250 million in annual federal funding.

“I believe in local control of schools,” said Sen. Geoff Michel, who represents Senate Republicans on the issue. He said the NCLB law “has grown the federal role in schools, in education, and in teaching, and I think that’s dangerous.”

Breaking with NCLB is an option the legislature has considered in the past, but never actually done. Sen. Michel believes the initiative could gain support this time because “there’s more interest now, [and] there’s more frustration now.” The issue is also timely, he said, since the 6-year-old law is up for reauthorization by Congress.

Supporters of such a move could be heartened by a decision last week by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit that revived a federal lawsuit in which school districts in three states—not including Minnesota—are challenging obligations for spending under the law. (“Court Ruling in NCLB Suit Fuels Fight Over Costs,” Jan. 16, 2008.)

Although the latest push in Minnesota is spearheaded by Senate Republicans—it remains to be seen if any in the House of Representatives will sign on as well—Sen. Michel believes it has bipartisan support in his chamber.

But Sen. Charles W. Wiger, a Democrat and the chairman of the Senate education committee, said his stance on the bill is that “Congress should mend it, not end it.” He is especially concerned about the prospect of forfeiting federal aid.

See Also

See other stories on education issues in Minnesota. See data on Minnesota’s public school system.

“At a time when school budgets are stretched to the limit, … we can’t afford that loss of funding,” he said.

In Sen. Michel’s view, however, even if the state were to lose federal aid, it might be better off if it does not have to comply with the law’s requirements, which include annual testing and other accountability provisions.

“I think it’s also a really strong statement from us that we’d rather have the discretion and flexibility than the money,” said Sen. Michel. “We’re not going to be held hostage by the federal government any longer when it comes to educating our kids.”

A version of this article appeared in the January 16, 2008 edition of Education Week

Events

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Budget & Finance Webinar
Innovative Funding Models: A Deep Dive into Public-Private Partnerships
Discover how innovative funding models drive educational projects forward. Join us for insights into effective PPP implementation.
Content provided by Follett Learning
Budget & Finance Webinar Staffing Schools After ESSER: What School and District Leaders Need to Know
Join our newsroom for insights on investing in critical student support positions as pandemic funds expire.
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Student Achievement Webinar
How can districts build sustainable tutoring models before the money runs out?
District leaders, low on funds, must decide: broad support for all or deep interventions for few? Let's discuss maximizing tutoring resources.
Content provided by Varsity Tutors for Schools

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Federal K-12 Leaders Denounce Antisemitism But Reject That It's Rampant in Schools
Three school district leaders said they're committed to rooting out antisemitism during a hearing in Congress.
6 min read
From left, David Banks, chancellor of New York Public schools, speaks next to Karla Silvestre, President of the Montgomery Count (Md.) Board of Education, Emerson Sykes, Staff Attorney with the ACLU, and Enikia Ford Morthel, Superintendent of the Berkeley United School District, during a hearing on antisemitism in K-12 public schools, at the House Subcommittee on Early Childhood, Elementary, and Secondary Education, on May 8, 2024, on Capitol Hill in Washington.
From left, David Banks, chancellor of New York City schools, speaks next to Karla Silvestre, president of the Montgomery County, Md., school board; Emerson Sykes, staff attorney with the ACLU; and Enikia Ford Morthel, superintendent of the Berkeley Unified school district in Berkeley, Calif., during a hearing on antisemitism in K-12 public schools, at the House Subcommittee on Early Childhood, Elementary, and Secondary Education, on May 8, 2024, in Washington.
Jacquelyn Martin/AP
Federal Miguel Cardona in the Hot Seat: 4 Takeaways From a Contentious House Hearing
FAFSA, rising antisemitism, and Title IX dominated questioning at a U.S. House hearing with Education Secretary Miguel Cardona.
6 min read
Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona testifies during a House Committee on Education and Workforce hearing on Capitol Hill, Tuesday, May 7, 2024, in Washington.
U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona testifies during a House Committee on Education and Workforce hearing on Capitol Hill on May 7 in Washington.
Mariam Zuhaib/AP
Federal Arming Teachers Could Cause 'Accidents and More Tragedy,' Miguel Cardona Says
"This is not in my opinion a smart option,” the education secretary said at an EdWeek event.
4 min read
U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona speaks during Education Week’s 2024 Leadership Symposium at the Hyatt Regency Crystal City in Arlington, Va., on May 2, 2024.
U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona speaks during Education Week’s 2024 Leadership Symposium at the Hyatt Regency Crystal City in Arlington, Va., on May 2, 2024.
Sam Mallon/Education Week
Federal Opinion Should Migrant Families Pay Tuition for Public School?
The answer must reflect an outlook that is pro-immigration, pro-compassion, and pro-law and order, writes Michael J. Petrilli.
Michael J. Petrilli
4 min read
Image of a pencil holder filled with a variety of colored pencils that match the background with international flags.
Laura Baker/Education Week via Canva