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Will Congress Finish Its Work on a Rewrite of NCLB?

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“That’s the real issue for this Congress,” Wise says. “Does it want to delay further acting on ESEA, but in so doing permit states to head off on their own and the executive branch to be largely determining what education reform and education policy look like?”

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In the short video to the right, Bob Wise, president of the Alliance for Excellent Education and former governor of West Virginia, examines whether Congress will be able to finish its work on a rewrite of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), currently known as the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act.

Wise notes that the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee passed the bill, but it still must go to the Senate floor and be conferenced with legislation from the House of Representatives before it can go to the president for his signature. He also notes that some observers believe that the president’s plan to grant states some flexibility from certain NCLB requirements may speed up congressional action.

“That’s the real issue for this Congress,” Wise says. “Does it want to delay further acting on ESEA, but in so doing permit states to head off on their own and the executive branch to be largely determining what education reform and education policy look like?”

The odds that Congress finishes its work might be long, but as Wise points out, so were the odds that the East Coast would have its first major snowstorm before Halloween.

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