“Support for low-graduation-rate high schools and protections for [traditionally underserved] students must be included in this bill before it becomes law,” said Gov. Bob Wise.
WASHINGTON, DC – Today, the U.S. Senate passed the Every Child Achieves Act, legislation to rewrite the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, which is currently known as No Child Left Behind (NCLB). In response, Bob Wise, president of the Alliance for Excellent Education and former governor of West Virginia, made the following statement:
“Today marked the beginning of the end for NCLB and its one-size-fits-all mandates. That’s the good news. The bad news is that the Every Child Achieves Act could start a major retreat from the recent historic increases in high school graduation rates.
“Although the Every Child Achieves Act requires states to collect and report data on schools and provides extensive flexibility to states on how to respond, it does not actually require states to act. Instead, it permits states to decide when, if, and where to intervene. That’s like equipping the fire department with new tools and alarms, then letting it choose which fires to put out.
“With more than 1,200 high schools still graduating less than two-thirds of their students, now is not the time to be tough on data and weak on action. Of the more than 1.1 million students attending these schools, most are students of color and students from low-income families.
“I stand in support of the forty-three senators who voted to ensure support for these high schools and for schools with traditionally underserved students that consistently demonstrate low performance. I appreciate the leadership of Senators Chris Murphy, Cory Booker, Elizabeth Warren, Chris Coons, Richard Durbin, Diane Feinstein, and Barbara Mikulski in offering this amendment that would have delivered much needed attention and resources to help African American and Latino students, students from low-income families, and other traditionally underserved students graduate from high school prepared for college and a career.
“Support for low-graduation-rate high schools and protections for these students must be included in this bill before it becomes law.”
The Alliance for Excellent Education is a Washington, DC–based national policy and advocacy organization dedicated to ensuring that all students, particularly those traditionally underserved, graduate from high school ready for success in college, work, and citizenship. www.all4ed.org