Washington Post Endorses Common Standards

By Mary Ann Zehr — May 11, 2009 1 min read
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The Washington Post published an editorial on Sunday offering support for “common, national standards.”

The editorial also says that improvements on the long-term National Assessment of Educational Progress trend data for younger students, particularly minority students, “can be traced to the standards-based reforms embodied in the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) law and the state efforts that predated it.”

As I indicated in a story about the long-term data published in this week’s Education Week, not everyone would agree with that assessment. Chester E. Finn, the president of the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, noted that at least he’d be cautious about attributing the recent success on NAEP of the younger students strictly to the No Child Left Behind Act. He wrote in Flypaper, that the “lion’s share” of gains for 9- and 13-year-olds in math and reading on NAEP from 1999 to 2008 occurred from 1999 to 2004, not from 2004 to 2008, so that “one could even claim that NCLB slowed the rate of gain.” I suspect that Finn has a lot of company in his questioning of any connections between drawn between NCLB and NAEP long-term trend data.

But Eduflack agrees with the gist of the Post‘s editorial. See his response here.

A version of this news article first appeared in the Curriculum Matters blog.